It is difficult to find managers committed to the same club for more than a couple of seasons in today’s world. Concurrently, it is equally difficult to come across clubs having patience with the same man on the sidelines through the highs and lows.
That understanding and connection is what makes the bond between Diego Simeone and Atletico de Madrid special. Come Saturday, the Argentine tactician will set a truly remarkable record as the manager who has overseen the most number of games for Atletico Madrid.
The record currently sits with Luis Aragones who coached the Rojiblancos through 612 games. Against Sevilla, Cholo will reach the magical number of 613.
Simeone took control at the helm for Atletico Madrid in December 2011. At the time, the Rojiblancos were going through a rough patch with subpar results and disappointing performances.
The Argentine came as the guiding light for the club. Through his pioneering transfers and controversial style of play, Simeone revolutionised and revived Atletico Madrid and brought them back onto the European picture.
Although he has been unable to taste European glory with his side, the world remembers how he was just seconds away from lifting the elusive title against arch-rivals Real Madrid in 2014.
The manager has come under fire in recent seasons, for it appears that his team are slowly regressing in quality. This season too, the Colchoneros sit 17 points behind league leaders Barcelona and finished in fourth place in their UEFA Champions League group.
Yet, the message from the management is clear- that the confidence in Simeone is complete. It remains to be seen if the Argentine continues past the summer, but even if he does, it will be as the most successful manager in the club’s history.
Ancelotti talks Courtois, Militao, Bellingham, VAR controversies ahead of Las Palmas vs Real Madrid
Coming off a highly controversial game against Almeria, Real Madrid will now travel to Gran Canaria to take on Las Palmas tomorrow as part of the early kick-off.
Carlo Ancelotti spoke about the clash tomorrow, starting off by confirming his goalkeeper for tomorrow, “Lunin will start tomorrow.”
He also added that Madrid were looking to get back to their usual level after back-to-back poor performances, one of which included elimination against Atletico Madrid in the Copa del Rey round of 16.
“We are motivated to return to our best level after 2 bad games.”
The Italian gaffer also commented on the biggest football story in the world today, which was Jurgen Klopp announcing his decision to leave Liverpool at the end of the season.
“It’s quite surprising, I understand. Working for a long time with the same club and players lowers your motivation a bit. He’s doing a fantastic job at Liverpool.”
And of course, Ancelotti also spoke about the leaked VAR audiovisual, some of which are highly controversial for all parties involved. Barcelona coach and players have also commented on the same, in light of the Negreira case.
“They have talked a lot. Everyone knows what has happened in the last 20 years in Spanish football. The Civil Guard is carrying out an investigations. That is the real problem of Spanish football.”
Luckily for the manager and fans, all injured players — minus the ACL trio of David Alaba, Eder Militao, and Thibaut Courtois — are available. Jude Bellingham is suspended, however.
“Everyone is available now after the recent period of injuries.”
“Making up for Bellingham’s absence tomorrow? Brahim and Joselu are available options. They were able to show themselves after I relied on them as substitutes,” he added.
And as far as Militao and Courtois are concerned, both of whom tore their ACL early in the season, Ancelotti suggested that they could make their return before the season ends.
“Courtois and Militão both have the option to play this season. The recovery process is going very well, they are training on an individual level. It is February and these types of injuries last 6-8 months, so I think they will recover before the end of the season.”
Source: Mundo Deportivo