Courtois: Atletico went to win

Thibaut Courtois has said Atletico Madrid’s desire to win the Champions League semi-final against Chelsea was evident in the second-half.

Atletico beat the Blues 3-1 with Courtois making a number of saves against his parent club, to the point Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho said the goalkeeper was the game’s decisive player.

Mourinho pointed to one save Courtois made from John Terry but while Courtois agreed it was a crucial stop, he insisted it was also a straightforward one.

“I tried to have a good game, especially with high balls as that’s one of Chelsea’s qualities,” Marca reports Courtois as saying post-match.

“The stop from Terry is not that difficult but it was important. Then there were others which helped decide the game. We’ve been strong at the back and good further forward.”

Courtois added that Chelsea showed greater endeavour in this game than in the first-leg goalless draw, but that Atletico’s eagerness to progress won through.

“I think Chelsea were more offensive here than in Vicente Calderon,” Courtois continued.

“We had bad luck with Koke hitting the crossbar and then we conceded the goal and didn’t defend well.

“But the response was very good. In the second-half we went out to win, not to defend.

“Getting to the final in Lisbon is important.”

The game was Courtois’ first at Stamford Bridge despite having been a contracted Chelsea player since 2011. He has spent the entire time on loan at Atletico but was impressed with his first experience of his ‘home’ ground.

“It’s a mythical stadium where there have been important and special games,” Courtois said.

“I leave here with a very good feeling.”

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