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MATCHES
 
 
 
 
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11/06/2013
 

Atlético Madrid's superb start to the season continued on Wednesday as an effortless 4-0 win over hapless Austria Vienna saw them qualify for the Champions League last 16 as winners of Group G.


Atlético, who have won 11 of their 12 matches in La Liga this season and won all four of their Champions League group games, eased to victory with goals by Miranda, Raul Garcia, Filipe Luis and the prolific Diego Costa, who took his tally to 13 goals in 11 games. Atletico's appearance in the last 16 is their first since the 2008/09 season and their victory also registered a new club record for successive wins in Europe's elite competition with four, beating the previous mark set by their predecessors in the 1958/59 campaign.


Atletico wasted little time in taking control of the game as Miranda scored in the 11th minute knocking the ball home from a few yards out after Garcia had failed to get proper contact on Koke's corner.


Garcia missed another good chance a few minutes later but made no mistake in the 25th minute as he headed home after being set up by Costa, adding to the goal he scored against the same opposition a fortnight ago.


Costa went close himself a minute later but his dipping volley was well saved by the visitors 'keeper Heinz Lindner, who had made several other good saves in the first half to keep the score relatively respectable.


However, he was picking the ball out of his net for the third time on the stroke of half-time, saving an Adrian Lopez shot only for Filipe Luis to finish into an empty net.


Garcia came close to doubling his tally for the evening 20 minutes into the second half, only to see his header saved by Lindner.


But Costa finally got on the scoresheet eight minutes from time, finishing off Garca's backheel into his path with real gusto, and many of the so-called bigger clubs will be hoping to avoid Diego Simeone's side in the knockout stages.

 
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09/18/2013
 

Atlético Madrid led by an inspired Arda Turan keeps notching wins, while Zenit plays two different games in one game. Atleti obtains an important 3-1 victory in its return to Champions League.

 

Champions League football returned to Vicente Calderón, Wednesday’s evening match against Zenit marked the start of Atleti’s ninth participation in one of the world’s prestigious tournaments.

 

Under a full moon, with a colchonero crowd committed from the first whistle till the end, Atlético Madrid ventured into a physical and slow paced match. The Russian side came to Madrid to win the tie. With a defensive line of five, and Hulk as the “killer” striker, Zenit hoped to catch a goal.

 

Atleti maintained the equilibrium it has shown since the start of the new season led by Koke, Gabi, and Mario Suaréz. The midfield was conquered by Atlético. Zenit’s Alex Witsel interventions on the offensive end were to no avail. The club of St. Petersburg’s offense was so desolate in the first half that its best player would turn out to be its left-wing back, Argentine, Cristian Ansaldi, who appeared in more than one occasion on the attacking end for his team. 

 

Adrián got the start for the suspended Diego Costa, and his interferences in the match revolved around whether he had to give the pass or shoot. The easy-going unruffled dribbling came with him Wednesday evening, but he had trouble capturing that cold-minded attitude he had back two seasons ago, Atleti went on to win the Europa League. Adrián needs to recuperate much needed confidence, “Cholo” Simeone believes in him, starting him over Leo Baptistao. 

 

The goal came late into the first half, minute 39. It devastated the hopes of the close to 500 Zenit spectators that made the four-hour long flight from St. Petersburg. From a corner kick like in the Copa del Rey final v Real Madrid, Miranda once again appeared when it most mattered. Diego Godín would finish the first half with a yellow card, giving Zenit a chance to score. Hulk took the free-kick; the end of the story was a weak shot that hit the colchonero barrier.

 

The team owned by Gazprom, one of the sponsors of this Champions League, woke up in the second half. Manager Luciano Spalletti made one substitution to start the second half Luis Neto for Oleg Shatov. Shatov would influence the match indirectly, his presence on the midfield untied Witsel, permitting him to accompany Hulk on the attack. Spalletti went from a backline of five to one of four.

 

First it was a fantastic diving stop by Thibaut Courtois after a Zenit header deep on the corner, but four minutes later, Hulk tied the match in the 58th minute with a thunderous left-footed shot that left Vicente Calderon quiet. Zenit found a way to break away from the Atleti defense with speed, of which was unnoticed in the first half.

 

When Zenit reverted the adversity, Atleti returned with a goal that started with a shot on goal and defense block, then another shot and goal, and a defense stop, and it finished with a defensive bust that would bounce off Arda Turan to give Atleti the lead. A bit of luck was present on Simeone’s side.

 

Adrián came off the pitch in the 78th minute for Leo Baptistao. For the crowd, he succeeded its expectations; he left with an ovation. The team had the lead and smelled the win. Baptistao would score the 3-1, two minutes later, enlightening that confidence boost he now possesses and Adrián once possessed. The assist came from Turan, the colchonero idol that in the Summer Transfer Window was speculated to move away from Madrid, but his love for Atleti grew and keeps growing. Cholo’s boys continue their superb form. 

 
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08/22/2013
 
Al Jazeera Sports cameras have revealed that Atlético Madrid defenders Diego Godín and Miranda wanted to exploit Barcelona superstar Lionel Messi's leg injuries during the first leg of Wednesday's Spanish Super Cup contest. 

As Messi begins to rub his left hamstring bothering him, Godín noticed this and began to signal to his Brazilian centerback partner of the legendary Argentine's problem. The Uruguayan defender signaled with a quick thumbs up signal to Miranda, who acknowledged Godín's move to target Messi's injury. 
 
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