Atletico went into the game six points clear of their city rivals with a game in hand, but were wary of Madrid after they had a strong week that included defeats of Sevilla and Borussia Monchengladbach.
“In the first half we played badly,” he said. “We couldn’t control possession and we failed to get at Casemiro, while they pressed well. They didn’t allow us to play the game on our terms.
Simeone also addressed an incident involving Joao Felix, when the Portuguese forward was quite vocal and aggressive in displaying his annoyance at being substituted.
“I understand and share his annoyance,” he said. “I know that when you go out you want to give more, but I wanted fresher people up front and more legs in the middle. The game was breaking in favour of Madrid and we wanted to compete better.”
The Argentine coach was keen to stress, however, that he and his team would take from the defeat, lick their wounds, and come back stronger.
“I take important things from the defeat,” Simeone said. “At a coaching level I still have things to improve. They were superior, it was clear. Were they totally superior? Perhaps not, but they were more precise and forceful.”
Featured image courtesy of Sky Sports.