In Koke’s head

Koke, durante un entrenamiento del Atlético.

Atlético wants to put an end to its demons in the derby. Look for a victory that would be the first in the Wanda Metropolitano against the greatest rival and the end of a streak that has already lasted for eight consecutive duels against Real Madrid. All this with the prize of approaching what has become the great objective of the course: close the Champions positions.


Koke's photo

And for that, a good version of Koke seems essential. The captain is not going through his best season, with suffering to take over the games, give the team rhythm of play and break lines in the midfield. Always indisputable in commitment and deployment, the gaps that Atlético is showing this season they leave him unprotected, having to do kilometric coverage where he suffers a lot every time they face him at speed.

Simeone knows that Koke is not having a good time, but also that there is no one to play his part. The captain stayed on the bench in San Mamés against Athletic, but the midfield left much to be desired in a 2-0 loss. It was his first substitution since January 9 against Villarreal, but in six of the previous eight games he had been substituted, once Rare avis in previous seasons. Yes indeed, The captain is the fourth Atlético player with the most minutes played this season (2,149), only behind Oblak, Carrasco and Llorente.

Athletic Shield/Flag

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In all, Koke has disputed 32 matches against Real Madrid, the rival that has been measured the most as a professional along with Barça (today the whites are once again in the lead alone). His experience seems fundamental in this type of match, in which he has scored two goals and seven assists (a balance of nine wins, ten draws and 13 losses). And a good part of Atlético’s options will depend on his level. In the first leg he made a serious mistake in the pass that ended up leading to Benzema’s first goal and the red-and-white team has been outmatched in the wide area of ​​the field in recent matches, except in the match against the Metropolitano last season where a goal from the white striker in the last minutes prevented the mattress victory. Atlético awaits the best Koke.


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