Atletico Madrid manager Diego Simeone has admitted Koke’s injury is a big loss, but believes Atletico can deal with his absence.
Torres and Corea came off the bench against Eiber to inspire the los colchoneros to a 2-0 victory. The only blot on that win was Koke’s injury, and Simeone admits that the Spaniard will be a big loss. “He’s a very important player for us. He has all the attributes of the complete midfielder: he does defensive work, he can pass between the lines, he’s good at dead balls and has a good engine… He always knows what the team needs. He’s a big loss”
Simeone also praised Fernando Torres’ hardwork and thinks it is paying him dividends. “Fernando is doing very well. He came back for pre-season in great shape and worked very hard. His efforts are paying off. He needs there to be demands made of him and we’re demanding he perform at his very best. He’s responding very well”. The Argentine said at the press conference.
Asked about the rotation of strikers, the manager thinks having too many options is good and bad at the same time. “Correa came on the other day and scored a goal, so we got the change right. When Jackson came on and didn’t score, we got the change wrong. We’re going to have to live with criticism which is logical, especially at such a big club”.
He also hailed Gabi and Tiago, two hugely players for Atletico. . “They have different characteristics. Tiago is the brains of the team, Gabi is much better at pressing and picking out players… We can combine them with SaA?l, Thomas and Koke when he’s fit again”.
Atletico Madrid have looked sharp this season, and they will be hoping to wipe off their visitors with another overwhelming performance tonight.