Atletico Madrid manager Diego Simeone has insisted that he will find a way to “hurt” Liverpool as they return to the Wanda Metropolitano.
The Reds face off against the La Liga side in the Spanish capital on Tuesday in the Champions League. While Liverpool have good memories of Atletico’s stadium, not all trips there have proved fruitful.
Following the Champions League final win at the ground in 2019, Liverpool lost 1-0 at the Wanda Metropolitano in the last 16 of the 2019/20 campaign.
Now, they play there again looking to take control of this term’s Group B.
Liverpool sit top, two points ahead of Atletico, who have not played in 17 days. Indeed, they had last weekend’s La Liga clash against Athletic Bilbao postponed following quarantine issues associated with the international break.
Liverpool had no such luck, but Simeone responded by throwing the gauntlet down over their last trip to his side’s stadium.
“You to have remember in the next 17 days, we have to play six games. It’s not bad that we’ve had a bit of a rest,” the manager said (via the Liverpool Echo).
“We’ll see how [Jose] Gimenez, [Marcos] Llorente and [Matheus] Cuhna evolve tomorrow.
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“We hope that everyone is in contention and ready for a fantastic game that will be full of red and white shirts in the stadium.
“Let’s not forget, the last time we played Liverpool in the Champions League, we were already winning that game before it even kicked off, I would like the fans to remember that tomorrow.”
The Reds struggled to create chances in the 1-0 defeat to Atletico. Saul Niguez’s goal from a corner after four minutes proved enough to hand the hosts a first-leg advantage.
But the Reds now find themselves in rich goalscoring form and they hit five at Watford on Saturday.
Simeone vows to hurt Liverpool
They have also shored up in defence following the return of the likes of Virgil van Dijk and Joel Matip.
But Simeone, whose side themselves have a reputation of defending resolutely, has insisted that his side will have a plan.
Chelsea, [Manchester] City, Liverpool, they’re going through a fantastic spell,” the manager added.
“It is a pleasure to see how they play. They have quick players on the break. With Van Dijk back, they have improved their defensive stability.
“We will try and find a way to hurt them.”
Liverpool have beaten AC Milan 3-2 and Porto 5-1 in their games so far. Atletico, meanwhile, recovered from a draw with Porto to beat Milan late on before the international break.