Atleti lost the first match of the season at Alavés on Saturday. The home side scored in the fifth minute and held on to their lead despite our chances.
The game started badly as the hosts took the lead very early on from a set piece. Laguardia headed home after a good cross. Our team struggled due to the opposition’s defensive organisation and intensity. As the match progressed, though, we improved. We started to collect chances – mainly from Kondogbia and Llorente, who came closest to levelling the scoreboard. However, we reached half-time one goal down.
Hermoso almost equalised in the opening moments of the second half through a beautiful volley that flew inches wide. We had our biggest chance yet not long after, as Laguardia cleared the ball off the line. Simeone made four substitutions one hour into the game. Trippier, Kondogbia, Carrasco and Hermoso made way for Lodi, Cunha, Correa and Herrera. Atleti pushed hard for the equaliser with many forwards on the pitch. Correa was close to scoring through a powerful shot that was saved by Pacheco. Simeone made one last switch as Vrsaljko came on for Llorente. We pushed until the last second but ultimately lost 1-0 at Alavés.
Next up: AC Milan in the Champions League on Tuesday.