A second string Atletico Madrid comfortably dispatched Hapoel Tel Aviv to begin their Europa League defence in assured fashion.
It was a much-changed Atleti that kicked off the game, with a number of first team stars left in the Spanish capital, including top scorer from the last two editions of the Europa League, Radamel Falcao.
However, Simeone’s line-up was rarely threatened in the opening period and were in command by the break.
After a strong first-half display, the the reigning champions took the lead through Cebolla Rodriguez less than 10 minutes before half-time, after neat work from Diego Costa in attack.
Within two minutes it was 2-0, thanks to the striker himself. Raul Garcia and Adrian combined in the middle of the park to pass through to Costa, who took the ball past the opposition ‘keeper to score.
The visitors then responded in the second half to Hapoel’s attempts to gain a foothold in proceedings with a third goal, this time from Raul Garcia, who sneaked in unmarked to finish from a corner.
Hapoel Tel Aviv 0-3 Atletico Madrid
Cebolla 37 (AM), Diego Costa 39 (AM), Raul Garcia 63 (AM)
Hapoel Tel Aviv: Apoula Edel; Antebi, Badier, Shushan, Pantsil; B. Coutinho (Toama 58), Djemba-Djemba; Ben Haim, Vermouth (Cohen 75), Maman; Toto Tamuz (Mare 69)
Atletico Madrid: Asenjo; Silvio, Miranda, Cata Diaz, Cisma; Mario, Emre, Raul Garcia, Cebolla (Juanfran 74); Adrian (Koke 68), Diego Costa (Saul Niguez 78)
Ref: Pol van Boekel (NED)
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