Antoine Griezmann scored an overhead kick and notched up an assist as Atletico Madrid beat Roma 2-0 to take their Champions League group down to the wire.
Griezmann had not scored for Atleti in two months, but the attacker made a timely return to form in Wednesday’s must-win against Roma.
Los Colchoneros were dealt a blow before kick-off as Juanfran Torres picked up an injury in the warmup, prompting a late reshuffle, with Thomas Partey moving to right-back and Augusto Fernandez coming into midfield.
They had to bide their time against the Giallorossi, but a breakthrough finally came on 69 minutes, when Angel Correa’s cross was acrobatically turned in by the Frenchman.
Griezmann then went from scorer to provider as his perfectly-weighted through ball allowed countryman Kevin Gameiro to round Alisson and tap in for the victory.
“We’re going to try until the end,” he said after the game.
“We knew that starting with tonight, it was important to win and after that we’d see.
“Words to the fans? I’m happy with my goal and for my teammates. That’s how I help them.
“Hopefully we can improve, me being the first. I always try to give my best. We have to work hard and keep doing so.
“I tried to do my best. I’d been scoring in training and with my national team, but not Atletico. You have to believe in yourself and keep going.
“Chelsea? It’ll be a great game match at a great stadium. We’ll go there to win and see what happens.”
Atleti must now beat Chelsea in two weeks’ time and hope Roma fail to beat Qarabag if they are to reach the knockout stages.
Atletico Madrid 2-0 Roma
Griezmann 69, Gameiro 85
Atletico Madrid: Oblak; Thomas, Gimenez, Lucas, Filipe; Koke (Gabi 63), Augusto (Correa 58), Saul, Carrasco (Gameiro 67); Griezmann, Torres
Roma: Alisson; Peres, Manolas, Fazio, Kolarov; Pellegrini (Strootman 62), Gonalons (El Shaarawy 78), Nainggolan; Gerson (Defrel 70), Dzeko, Perotti
Referee: Kuipers (NED)