There is no worse wedge than that of the wood itself. That is a saying that has been around Cholo’s head in recent days. A head full of doubts. If the week before the game in San Mamés, Simeone was clear about what his team would be, before Madrid there is only one meridian thing: there will be no corridor from Atlético to the champion in the Metropolitan. So, after the 0-0 against Granada and the elimination against City, he rested his team for three and a half days, and returned with very clear ideas: Substitute Koke and a striker with Griezmann and Suárez. Herrera and Giménez returned. It was no use. Athletic went over the rojiblancos in blue from the first minute. 2-0. This week with rest on Wednesday every day is a test.
The first day, new trident, Cunha-Griezmann-Correa. The second, yesterday, many systems, tests, onces. In all of them a man repeats, the Brazilian, in search of that Cunha from before the injury against Levante, sprained knee: five goals and two assists in 642′. None since he got back. Cunha with others. One, surprise. One, that wedge of the same wood: Marcos Llorente, Cholo’s anti-Madrid weapon.
Ancelotti’s confidence in his first Madrid
Because Llorente has spent the season traveling to the right side, a place that takes him away from the area, which has turned him off, from double figures last season (13 goals and 12 assists) to zero, could play at the top, near the area, that place where his motorcycle is lethal. The bottom line, his stride, Llorente capable of changing a game that was filled with clubs like the one at Anfield in extra time. Simeone tried an unprecedented point, with Llorente at Cunha’s side in a 4-4-2, the old coat from before, with Oblak; Vrsaljko, Savic, Gimenez, Lodi; Correa, Kondogbia, Koke and Carrasco. The captain’s return to ownership. The return of Savic after suspension with Giménez, to be locked again. That anti-Madrid weapon. Llorente.
The rojiblanco who is the best in the team in recoveries in LaLiga according to Olocip, the third in assists, the fourth in forward passes and the fifth in passes into space, in interceptions and in driving. That footballer who fell in love with Ancelotti on his first time at Real Madrid and who will face him on Sunday. His motorcycle converted into that wedge with which Simeone only seeks one thing: that the corridor that will not be done before is not during, in the game. The next Champions League is more than a title for the rojiblancos. The future as well as the present. With everyone, with everything.