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Atlético de Madrid face a nervous shootout against Red Bull Salzburg next week to reach UEFA Champions League knockouts after they were only able to draw 1-1 with a much-changed Bayern Munich on Tuesday night.
Joao Félix gave the hosts the lead midway through the first period by clinically converting a low cross from Marcos Llorente, an advantage they held until the 86th minute of the game. Thomas Muller was the catalyst as Felipe fouled him in the box and then converted from the penalty spot to ensure the teams took a share of the points.
Here are three things we learned from Madrid:
Felix reaching the potential
After a somewhat nonchalant first season with Atleti following his big money move from Benfica, young winger Joao Felix now certainly appears to be a £ 120 million player. The Portuguese already has eight goals and three assists in all competitions this season, just one goal less than what he achieved in all of last season.
He is now showing supreme confidence with the club, leading the line excellently against Bayern, all the more impressive considering the absence of regular number 9 Luis Suárez. He led the game in shooting after having his sights set three times, an effort slammed into the crossbar.
Felix’s shot for his goal was also one of a consummate striker, as he hit Llorente’s ball at home for the first time, while also showing extreme pace and skill for most of the clash. It looks like he’s going to have an explosive season, finally fulfilling the promise he showed before his arrival in Madrid.
Atleti rue missed opportunities
Now heading into a win-win matchup against Red Bull Salzburg next time, Diego Simeone will reflect on a huge missed opportunity against a Bayern team that made a host of changes. They also had the most chances throughout the game, many of them wasted.
The hosts took 13 shots on goal throughout the match, only three of them on goal. Mario Hermoso and José Giménez lifted what looked like easy headers over the crossbar. Opportunities continued to come and go in the final stages with up to three Atleti corps lining up to turn an evil cross, but none of them managed to make meaningful contact.
If Simeone’s men suffer elimination next week, these missed opportunities against what was actually a weaker Bayern team could be the main reason.
Bayern’s winning streak ended but will continue
You have to go back to March 2019 for Bayern Munich’s last defeat in the UEFA Champions League. Since then, they have won 15 consecutive matches in the competition and lifted the trophy against Paris Saint Germain. It is the longest winning race in the competition’s history, at least five more than any other team.
While Bayern boss Hansi Flick and the club’s supporters will of course be disappointed to see the winning streak stopped, one consolation they will take is that it seems unlikely that any team will match that level of dominance in the game. short term. Having also progressed to the knockout rounds of the Champions League once again, it’s no wonder they are the favorites to lift the trophy and defend their title. They can be backed with 11/4 odds with Betfair to win the competition at the end of the campaign.
Atletico Madrid: Oblak (7); Hermoso (6), Giménez (7) (Felipe (6), 67 ′), Savic (7), Trippier (7); Carrasco (6) (Lodi (N / A), 87 ′), Saúl (6), Koke (7), Llorente (7); Félix (8) (Lemar (N / A), 87 ′), Correa (6) (Herrera (N / A), 80 ′).
Bayern Munich: Nubel (6); Hernández (7), Alaba (7), Sule (6); Arrey-Mbi (5) (Gnabry (6), 61 ′), Martínez (6) (Muller (7), 62 ′), Musiala (6) (Stiller (N / A), 76 ′), Sarr (5) (Richards (6), 62 ‘); Costa (6) (Zirkzee (N / A), 86 ′), Sano (6), Choupo-Moting (5).
Goals: Felix (26 ′), Muller (PEN 86 ′)
Referee: Clemente Turpin
Yellow cards: Sarr (43 ′), Savic (86 ′)
Red cards: REACH