Great scenes and tactics were displayed in the match between Atletico Madrid and Barcelona. The initial strategy fired by Ivan Rakitic for the Catalans put them on the lead. However, it was shocking to know that they got pegged back because of the Argentine substitute, just before losing the most substantial number ten spot, right at the second half.
Critics felt that Barcelona didn’t have Lionel Messi and it was because of his injury that triggered the match being drawn. But Atletico Madrid did a great job to tie the game at 1-1 at Camp Nou on Wednesday. It was well aware to the champions that a win can help them to reach within the points of the leading team Real Madrid as they had drawn a match with Villarreal. However, things didn’t go in the way Barcelona wanted as the first half header of Rakitic was just cancelled because of Angel Correa in the second period.
Even more damaging was done to Barca which is the loss of Messi. The constant recurrence of the groin issue Messi had made it impossible for him to take part in the match. Furthermore, even Sergio Busquets had to withdraw from the game, just an hour before the match started. Being unbeaten in the last 12 league matches, the Luis Enrique’s side showed how they can take control of Atletico. And they did much of it in the first half.
But they found it tough to get the clear-cut chances, right before Rakitic was able to head to the cross of Andres Iniesta from the short corner. A strong start was made by Atleti during the second period and was able just to snatch the given equalizer.
This was possible because of the substitutes Correa and Fernando Torres who combined within the minute of coming on. All this happened when Messi really failed with to get shake off the major discomfort that he got after his match with Deigo Godin.
Good Show By Atleti
Among the last four meetings, three were won by Atleti and that too during the season 2-1 as they were able to push harder to win. However, things didn’t go as it seemed because Diego Simeone’s side was able to keep them at bay, due to the relative ease involved in the closing stages. This helped in making sure that they were a point behind in the table and just four adrift to Madrid.
The early possession of Barca helped in getting some few necessary opportunities. And as Messi was curled to Oblak’s arm right from the 20 yards off the sight of the goal, it was up to Atleti to easily get the better of the opening present to them in the first-half. And they did it with ease.
Furthermore, Yannick Carrasco was able to put Ter Stegen right at full stretch by curling the given drive to the left of the penalty area just before Luis blasted right over the crossbar. This was 20 yards away from the Barca and after it was unsuccessful to clear the lines.
Naturally, it was disappointing for the home crowd even though Barca tried their best to gain a win.