Atletico Madrid faced Chelsea this evening in Bucharest in the first leg of their Champions League last 16 tie. The match was unable to be played in Spain due to covid-19 regulations, meaning Los Rojiblancos effectively ceded home advantage.
Atletico came into the tie on the back of a tough week, where they missed the opportunity to pull away from the cabal of teams chasing their crown in La Liga. They drew with and then lost to Levante, enabling Real Madrid to move within three points of them and also giving rope to both Sevilla and Barcelona. The title race, it seems, isn’t quite wrapped up.
Atletico started the game perhaps with this slump in mind, with Diego Simeone opting for a defensive formation that appeared to be almost a six at the back out of possession, ceding the ball to the Londoners. They came close early on, however, after Edouard Mendy, Chelsea’s goalkeeper, very nearly saw his sloppy touch pounced upon by Atletico.