Diego Simeone insists Atletico Madrid are not out for revenge against Real Madrid as “I always look at the Germans and their philosophy to keep insisting”.
Atleti head into Saturday’s derbi, the last ever at the Vicente Calderon, six points behind Madrid, who are top of La Liga, still unbeaten this season and triumphed in both sides’ previous meeting – the Champions League final back in May.
“We’ve never played with relaxation or without respecting our opponents,” the Coach said at a Press conference.
“They come into the game on the back of going 28 games unbeaten and with extraordinary players, so we must take it to where we’re most comfortable and play with the necessary intensity.
“Revenge for Milan? We’re not experiencing these kinds of situations. Football is wonderful in how you can be so close to success and failure simultaneously.
“As I said in preseason, I always look at the Germans and their philosophy to keep insisting. I don’t think [the final] is something that can help us play better.
“Madrid? They’re strong in the aerial game and space for their ruthlessness. Lucas Vazquez gives them more balance, Benzema more goals. They’ve done well in Casemiro’s absence, so it’ll be tough regardless.
“Modric? He’s a player that manages to combine the attacking with defensive. Beyond the goals from Cristiano and Bale … The Iniestas, Modrics and Kokes give you better chances of winning.
“Griezmann? He’s feeling better and I hope he plays well. We’re lucky to have a player that wants to improve and sees the things that he’s told. I feel lucky to have a player with the tools that he has.
“Being six points behind? What matters to us is how we approach the game and read the emotional aspect of it being the last League match against our arch-rivals here. Thus, being three, six or nine points behind has no importance.
“We know all our strengths and faults, that there was a time they were better and today we’re on a par with them and above all that a game is a game, not a season.
“Gameiro? He’s in continuous growth with the team, we need his pace and link-up play, his understanding with Griezmann. We’re lucky because it’s always difficult for new players to adapt.
“Godin and Argentina? He trained well yesterday and I watched Argentina-Brazil and Argentina-Colombia.
“I thought the second was a good match for putting us back in with a chance of qualifying for the World Cup.”