Atletico Madrid boss Diego Simeone has insisted that “there’s nothing more important” than Saturday’s visit of Villarreal in La Liga.
Atleti’s match against Villarreal is followed by the first leg of their Champions League last-16 tie against PSV just three days later, but Simeone made it clear his entire focus lay with the task at hand.
“[Villarreal] are great opponents, hence why they’re fighting for fourth place and many points ahead of fifth,” the Coach said at a Press conference.
“They are competing very well, have good numbers, both in attack and in defence, are a very tight unit, very strong and have very clear ideas. All this makes them compete as they have been.
“[On Augusto Fernandez returning], he made his first contact with the squad [since his injury] on Saturday.
“His recovery is improving and it’s important that he returns in the best shape possible because the games which follow require everyone at 100 percent.
“[On Atleti being better away from home], the team have responded well away from home, and at home, we seem to struggle more, but we’ve played against tougher opponents at home.
“In addition, our opponents at the Calderon sit quite deep and force us to break them down with more creativity.
“[On Yannick Carrasco’s absence], we’re evaluating the best solution for the game, and we’ll try to name the team which best serves us to play the way we want.
“The team are working well, coming off the back of two good results, and we hope to stay on this path.
“We also want the fans to get behind the team for what’s an important game [on Sunday].
“[On prioritising Villarreal or the Champions League], I won’t change my ways, I have an idea of what I want and then I can be proved wrong, but we play every game thinking about its importance.
“There’s nothing more important than the next game, so we must play with the best team at our disposal.”