Former Atletico Madrid captain Gabi Fernandez would ‘prefer to win with Atleti’s style’ than that of Real Betis Coach Quique Setien.
Now playing in Qatar, the central midfielder became an icon of Los Rojiblancos and cited his former club winning 1-0 at home to Betis earlier in the campaign.
“Atleti do not change, we always have the same approach,” said Gabi, now at Qatari club Al Sadd.
“The club are always at the same level, but we are growing in consistency, always fighting for titles – it is such an enjoyable club to play for, I loved my decade at Atleti.
“I prefer to win with the style of play of Atleti than to play with the style of Setien of going to the Metropolitano and losing 1-0.
“Atleti’s idea is to win games, it gets the best qualities from its players and if we did not play in this way then we would not fight for titles.
“We could not play tiki-taka, we could not play expansive passing – if that happened we would not win enough games to challenge.
“Saturday’s match against Barcelona? Messi almost always makes a difference, it is important to try and nullify his threat and exploit Barca’s weaknesses.
“For Atleti, Antoine (Griezmann) and Jan (Oblak) are the decisive players, they win points at both ends, and Simeone is indispensable in all of this.”