Simeone: Similarities with Chelsea

Diego Simeone has admitted that there are ‘similarities’ between his Atletico Madrid side and Chelsea.

The Rojiblancos host the Premier League outfit in the first leg of their Champions League semi-final this evening.

And the Argentine Coach has claimed that it will be a close encounter.

“We’re not the same, but there are similarities,” he told a Press conference.

“Chelsea have one of the meanest defences in England, and that’s our case in Spain. We work well defensively, we're direct, good on set pieces.

“Those similarities are what have led us to where we are now – one fighting for the League in England and us being where we are in our League.

“We focus on ourselves, we respect our rivals but we can’t think about the games ahead. It's in our own hands – we know what our strengths and weaknesses are.

“They know how to manage this situation and I’m sure they’ll do what’s best for them.

“Words don’t count for much at this point. What counts for us are facts, and preparing as well as possible for the match.

“I’ll talk to the players spontaneously about how I feel, that’s the best way of expressing myself.

“I expect a very tight match decided by details or by the odd moment of technical quality.

“The team that works better collectively will manage to bring out these individual qualities and will be closest.”

Simeone then commented on Thibaut Courtois’ state of mind – coming up against his parent club. And Fernando Torres, who will return to Vicente Calderon, having captained them team as a teenager.

“He looks the same to me as the rest of his 20 teammates. They're really up for it.

“ It's an important moment for each of the players, as well as for the club and the fans.

“Fernando will get the reception he deserves. Fernando loves this team a lot, he cares about Atlético Madrid.

“He was given an ovation [at the 2012 UEFA Super Cup] in Monaco. He’ll always be an Atlético fan.

“It’s normal for the fans to be against him during the 90 minutes, but before and after the match he’ll get the ovation he deserves.”

Tags Chelsea Simeone