Atletico Madrid have not had the best of starts to their La Liga campaign, with the 2020 champions most recently succumbing to cross-town rivals Real Madrid.
It was not the best of games for Los Colchoneros who tried to make a late comeback through a Mario Hermoso goal, but it was simply too little too late, as Real Madrid managed to hold on to their slender one-goal lead to clinch a 2-1 victory.
In addition to the defeat, it appears Atletico Madrid have been another major blow in the aftermath of the Madrid derby, with Joao Felix still yet to train with the Portugal team.
The Atleti superstar was called up by the Portuguese national team ahead of the UEFA Nations League matches earlier this summer.
But according to Belen Sanchez Garcia, he has not taken part in the training. In fact, he has been ruled out for the upcoming against the Czech Republic.
The former SL Benfica starlet remains a doubt against Spain as well, which raises serious concerns over the player’s fitness.
Sanchez Garcia suggests Felix’s injury came in the aftermath of a rash tackle from Real Madrid defender Dani Carvalaj during the derby. Another tackle from Eder Militao did not help his cause either.
Atletico believe that Carvajal was intentionally trying to injure Felix, just as he did with Antoine Griezmann last season.
Diego Simeone even wanted to substitute Felix early on in the game, but the player wanted to continue. He ended up playing until the hour mark before being replaced by Matheus Cunha.
The brunt of Felix’s injury remains unclear at the moment. But Atletico Madrid would ideally want him to return to the pitch after the end of the international break.
The forward is considered one of the key assets in Atleti’s attacking setup and his potential injury could be catastrophic for the team, especially ahead of the gruelling October schedule.
Atletico lash out at referee’s decision during Real Madrid clash: “They create such pressure”
Real Madrid’s win over Atletico Madrid once again showed the European Champions’ ability to fight back even from the deepest of troughs and come back on top. The men in white were a goal down with 15 minutes to spare but forced extra time and managed to advance to the semi-finals of the Copa del Rey.
However, the game was not without its own share of controversy. One of the biggest moments came in the 71st minute when Dani Ceballos avoided a red card that would have changed the course of the game. Ironically, Atletico Madrid had Stefan Savic sent off in extra time to help Real Madrid progress.
To give context Ceballos was already on a yellow card for making an unnecessary challenge in the 69th minute of the game. Two minutes later, he appeared to have caught Thomas Lemar near the knee.
Atletico Madrid thus demanded that he get a second yellow and receive his marching orders. Given that the Rojiblancos were already up a goal, it could have changed the course of the game. But the referee did not show a second yellow to the Real Madrid midfielder.
Los Rojiblancos are far from happy with the refereeing at Santiago Bernabeu and have released an official statement via their CEO, Miguel Angel Gil Marin, regarding their displeasure. The statement is as follows:
“With 0-1, in the 71st minute, playing the place for the Copa semifinals in their own stadium, leaving Real Madrid with 10 players is big words.
“Real Madrid is a club with a very strong environment, with many interests around it. They create such pressure that it’s normal to affect the people who must make decisions. They [referees] are aware of what awaits them if they made a mistake.”
Clearly, the accusation from Diego Simeone’s side goes far beyond the events of the derby and makes a contentious general statement about Real Madrid’s influence on matches.