Diego Simeone hopes this week to make full use of his squad once more in the Copa del Rey, a competition that he wants to win.
El Cholo followed on from Filipe Luis in asserting that focus at the moment is only on the midweek Cup match, barely mentioning the Madrid derby coming up on Saturday.
“Tomorrow we hope to seal the tie with Jaen after the result from the first leg and we expect the younger players selected to be at their best to provide a good match,” commented the Argentine, who is expected to ring the changes for the second leg tie against Real Jaen, with the score already at 3-0.
“Is the game useful? I can draw conclusions from the minutes the players will get, I give a lot of value to the minutes.
“Diego Costa played in the first leg and much was said of the players in this alternative line-up. I consider that we must take advantage of the minutes available and still do things in the right way.
“If they do things in the right way then the Coach has the problem of who to choose to play in future games.
“We have a lot of games between now and the end of December and we will try to resolve them in the best way, thinking day by day.”
When Simeone took over as Atletico Coach last December, the team had just been eliminated from the Copa del Rey by Albacete.
“The team I encountered is like the one now, with commitment, enthusiasm and mental strength to get out of that difficult moment.
“But, without talent, commitment and effort you can accomplish nothing. The team was lacking that at that moment. Over time we have found it again, the team has an identity of playing the game and hopefully we can respect that.
“We respect our opponent and we will see what happens this week. The most important thing is that we have to play our game.”
Simeone won this competition when he was a player at the Vicente Calderon.
“It is always the same. When we played, the fans were least enthusiastic at the start of the tournament. But to get to the final you have to go through these stages.
“It is most important right now to the players…”
Atleti go into the midweek fixture off the back of a 4-0 win over Sevilla at the weekend.
“I was delighted to win against Sevilla because we made good the triumph over Granada [the previous week].
“We have made that win more important. Obviously we are in a good way to address the Cup and then what is coming next in the League.
“Will I watch Madrid this week? I always look around, watch football, we always change the channel at home and when I see green I stop. Other than for golf or tennis.”