In a surprising cap to a highly anticipated match, city rivals Real Madrid and Atletico ended up in a scoreless draw in their Champions League quarterfinals match on Tuesday.
Real managed to gain control of much of the first half of the match, with winger Gareth Bale and right back Dani Carvajal leading the charge. Bale came very close to getting a goal that would have broken the deadlock. However, Atletico goalkeeper Jan Oblak put up an impressive defence and pulled off a point blank save to deny the Welshman the net.
Come the second half, the match was more evenly played, as Atletico started to put the pressure back onto Real. The Mattress Makers’ striker Mario Madxukic led the counterattack made by his team, with him creating several openings. However, his efforts were also not enough, as the team was not able to convert on these openings. The entry of striker Fernando Torres late into the game also boosted Atletico’s offense.
Real’s Cristiano Ronaldo tried once more to break the impasse in injury time, but Oblak once again proved to be tenacious, ending the match in a stalemate.
Despite the result, Atletico coach Diego Simeone says that he was ve4ry pleased out how his team managed to come back in the second half. “We changed our intensity, our play, the position on the pitch we were playing and pressing from,” the coach explained. “So you saw Oblak less in the second half, the game was then much closer to how we wanted from the start.”
On the other hand, Real Madrid’s Carlo Ancelotti did not hide his disappointment over the several missed openings that they had in the first half. However, he reiterated that Bale was not to blame. “Gareth played a good game and the same goes for the whole team. I am really satisfied because we worked hard.” The Whites’ manager also gave props to Oblak on his save from Bale. “It was a good save because their keeper in the first half was really important for Atletico.”
The second leg of the match is set to be played Tuesday next week