Atletico Madrid boss, Diego Simeone, said he was happy despite the away defeat to Bayer Leverkusen insisting a it could have been worsea .
Atletico Madrid lost to Bayer Leverkusen in the first-leg of the Champions League round-of-16 in Germany. The only goal of the game came from a stunning strike from Hakan Calhanoglu, while Fernando Torres had a goal disallowed in the second half and Tiago was sent off late on for two bookable offences.
Someone spoke about the defeat and admitted that Atletico could not handle the pressing. He said that the result could have been worse and he is happy with that the away side only lost by a 1-0 margin.
“It could’ve been worse. It was a strange game – I don’t think either side created many chances,” he said after the match. “We couldna t handle their pressing. They won the second balls.
“I imagined Torres would have a chance like the one he had, which was ruled out by I dona t know who a the fourth official, the fifth, the third?
“Having made two changes in the first half, having had a goal disallowed and losing 1-0, I’m happy.
“I have the feeling that they left us with life because another rival may have pushed us harder.”
Atletico Madrid had to make to make two first-half substitutions as both Guilherme Siqueira and Saul Niguez had to come off due to injury. despite the injury blows, Simeone praised Leverkusena s tough-tackling style and exuded confidence in his squad depth.
“They’re an intense team. We like playing against teams like that,” he added.
“There is no problem. [Jose] Gimenez and Mario [Suarez] will likely play instead.”
Meanwhile, defender Diego Godin admitted that Atletico Madrid lacked their usual intensity, but insisted that the tie is still open.
“It’s not a great result but the tie is still open. We have to play at the Calderon and do things very well there,” the Uruguay international told Canal Plus.
“I think we were lacking a bit of intensity without the ball. We’re not a team with great fluidity on the ball but we’re usually the favourites in the game without it.
“The opposition were also very intense – it would have been easy otherwise. They played very well. We would have liked to be better but we couldn’t do it.
“This is the Champions League. It’s the second round, it’s not going to be easy. We’ll try to do a great job at home. We have confidence.”