Barcelona sweeps away the ashes of Atlético (0-3)

Atlético went to the fight against a man and found a team that swept away the ashes of the men who had come back against Inter on Wednesday to get into the quarterfinals of the Champions League. The match had focused on the return of Joao Félix, who is still a secondary player in this Barcelona team, but the presence of the Portuguese was just a distraction maneuver.

The Metropolitan took out his anger on him when he scored the first of the game – in fact he did not stop doing so throughout the match – but the maneuver that had broken Atlético was that of Gundogan, who changed the ball on his feet to gain space before to give Lewandowski the advantage in the area. The Pole had time to raise his head and see the arrival of Joao Félix, who only had to put his foot down to overtake his team.

Xavi said before the game that Joao was extra motivated. His lineup also motivated the Metropolitan fans, but there was no way for Atlético to get motivated. Neither extra nor normal.

The red and whites had their minds elsewhere, in the Champions League, which allows them to imagine themselves in a European final again. Otherwise the pass that De Paul gave to Raphinha at the beginning of Barcelona’s second goal cannot be explained. He had no one around to bother him, but he limited himself to handing the ball to the nearest soccer player, even though he was wearing a different uniform. Raphinha put the ball between the centre-backs and Lewandowski did the rest. He took the ball because he put more effort than Reinildo and hit it almost from no angle but with all the intention in the world to make it move away from Oblak.

While Atlético imagines a beautiful future in Europe to recover the traditions of Cholo’s early days – it was customary for it to play European finals in even-numbered years – it is moving away from next season’s Champions League. Athletic has already moved it from fourth place and now Atlético would only have the right to the Europa League.

He had some burst of pride after that little De Paul disaster. Llorente tested Ter Stegen’s hands with a hard shot and the Barcelona goalkeeper once again responded with agility to Correa’s shot after it was rebound.

The Argentine was the closest to Atlético’s goal with a shot against the post. By then Barcelona had already scored the third. Fermín and Lewandowski switched roles and the youth player headed in a cross from the Pole from the right. Fermín, who had had to urgently enter the lineup due to Christensen’s injury in the warm-up, had already proven his connection with Cubarsi in those long passes that the center back sends behind the opposing defense, but the goal came from the least expected way.

It could have been even worse for Atlético if Molina had not cut off an advance by Vítor Roque, who was left hand in hand with Oblak. He avoided the goal, but earned the expulsion. It was not the day of the red and white defense. Savic had lost all the duels with Lewandowski and Barcelona found the spaces behind him too easily.

It was not the day, actually, for Atlético. He imagined that his head was somewhere else and his body was in pain from the alignment. Koke and Griezmann started on the bench, like Memphis, and Simeone imagined a match in which the superiority on the wings, with Llorente and Riquelme as wingers, would give him an advantage. But Xavi responded with the effort of Raphinha, who often completed a defense of five as right back. Because Barcelona is a team, even if Atlético imagined fighting only against Joao Félix.

2024-03-17 22:28:01
#Barcelona #sweeps #ashes #Atlético


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