08/12/2020 - 15:44
Diego Simeone never walks with folds in his speech. And he had no reason to improvise on the eve of this Thursday's match between his Atlético de Madrid and Leipzig, for the quarterfinals of this very particular Champions League that will be defined in the next 12 days in Lisbon.
"We want the footballers to take the game with clarity to do damage. It is a very beautiful competition and we are excited. Winning is not important, but the only thing there is, " Simeone warned at the press conference prior to the duel this Thursday.
In that sense, Cholo knows that his team is facing a unique opportunity to win the tournament that has been denied in the last decade, with two lost finals (in the 2013-2014 and 2015-2016 seasons) at the hands of Real Madrid, his classic rival who already said goodbye to the competition after falling to Manchester City.
Simeone, this Wednesday, at Atlético de Madrid training. Photo: AFP
When asked if football owes the Colchonero a Champions League , the Argentine coach preferred to focus on the duel against the surprising team of the former East Germany. "That does not correspond to me, I only think about preparing tomorrow's game which will be difficult and with a great coach," he said.
Without embracing anything, the manager chose not to confront Julian Nagelsmann , Leipzig manager, who on Tuesday had said that Simeone was going to ask for "yellow cards, fouls and penalties from the wing." "He does it on purpose. He has a lot of experience and is very intelligent. He knows what he is doing and how to do it. We will have to focus on ourselves and not fall into such games," remarked the young German coach.
What did the Cholo answer him? Nothing. "I'm not talking about that. Tomorrow we will face a team that plays very well and a coach who works well. She has had results similar to ours."
Likewise, it chose not to take as a reference the triumph over the mighty Liverpool, defending champion and one of the best teams in Europe with the heavy metal of Jürgen Klopp, in the round of 16 series that closed before the pandemic of coronavirus.
Simeone celebrates excessively in the game against Liverpool. Photo: Reuters
"The victory against Liverpool is not a reference because the enthusiasm has already passed through time. It was very far away, " he warned.
Finally, Simeone regretted the casualties of Ángel Correa and Sime Vrsaljko , the two players who will miss the game after testing positive for coronavirus.
"Sime played his last game leaving everything behind and Correa is also all heart. It's a shame, but they have to recover and we'll see if we find ourselves if we advance," he concluded.