Atletico Madrid boss Diego Simeone has expressed his delight with the return of captain Koke for Sunday’s trip to Real Sociedad.
The midfielder has spent the past month sidelined with a thigh injury but will make his comeback at Anoeta this weekend, and the Coach is hoping that the player’s availability will coincide with an improvement in Los Colchoneros’ fortunes.
“Koke is good to go [against Real] and has enthusiasm and desire to play again.
“For us, he’s important because he gives us tactical possibilities and attributes which can help to determine games.
“Koke is growing in accordance with his age and place in the team. Being captain is an important responsibility for him. He’s maturing and getting better every day.
“It’s true that our start to the season hasn’t been easy. We’ve done well, but there’s room for improvement.
“We need to improve, but it’s up to me first and then the players.
“Playing on Sunday isn’t a bad thing. We respect the schedule we’ve been given.
"I can’t say [the internationals] will play better than those who stayed behind during the international break because everything is relative.
“Some are here to play and win, while the others can’t play, like Jackson [Martinez] who will be keen to score.”