Atletico Madrid stumble once more to maintain La Liga title race alive


Atletico Madrid gave renewed hope to their La Liga title rivals on Saturday by shedding 2-0 at dwelling to Levante and lacking the possibility to increase their six-point lead on the prime of the desk.

The defeat is barely Atletico’s second within the league this season and their first on the Wanda Metropolitano in any competitors since Barcelona beat them there in December 2019.

It means what might have been a commanding 11-point benefit on the prime of the desk is now simply six, with Actual Madrid, the closest challengers, up in opposition to Actual Valladolid afterward Saturday.

Because of rearranged fixtures, Atletico have been dealing with Levante for the second time in 4 days, having already dropped two factors in opposition to them in an away 1-1 draw on Wednesday.

And Levante proved that was no fluke by going one higher, their spectacular victory inflicting one other setback on Diego Simeone’s facet, who must rediscover their rhythm for Tuesday’s Champions League final 16 first leg at dwelling to Chelsea.

Luis Suarez shall be up in opposition to English opposition once more in midweek and the Uruguayan went closest to discovering an equaliser, his bending free-kick within the second half coming again off the publish.

Suarez has now gone three league video games with out scoring for the primary time this season.

Jose Luis Morales had already put Levante in entrance after half an hour and whereas Atletico huffed and puffed for many of the second half, they may not discover a manner by.

With goalkeeper Jan Oblak up for a nook in injury-time, Jorge de Frutos made it two by launching into an open internet.

Atletico have now gone seven league video games with no clear sheet, their longest run since Simeone grew to become coach in 2011.

One other concern for Simeone will the health of central defender Jose Gimenez, who needed to go off injured within the second half, making him a doubt to face Chelsea in midweek.

They got an early warning by Levante when one lengthy cross from Ruben Rochina was all it took to ship Morales in on aim however regardless of an outstanding first contact, the striker dribbled his end huge.

However Morales discovered the web after half an hour, this time optimistically to assist him. Geoffrey Kongodbia dangled a weak leg right into a problem on the sting of the realm and the ball fell to Morales to complete after a deflection from Felipe.

Gimenez waved to the bench to come back off however for 20 minutes, Atletico launched an assault on Levante’s aim.

Suarez’s curling free-kick hit the publish whereas Joao Felix twice did not convert from crosses fizzed in from the proper.

Correa thought he had an equaliser, poking in after a scramble within the field, however the aim was dominated out for a doubtful foul by Suarez as he challenged for a ball within the air.

The possibilities dried up and Atletico grew determined. Oblak ventured up for a last-gasp nook however the ball was headed away and De Frutos capitalised to verify victory.

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