The game started sloppily for both teams, with lots of possession lost around midfield and a lack of quality chances. The Yannick Ferreira Carrasco-Fernando Torres combination was active early, the former saw much of the ball and the latter nearly toed home his 100th Atlético goal. Koke won a corner inside 20 minutes, and in vintage Koke fashion, he swung a perfect ball in to an unmarked(?!?) Diego Godín. For the first time in 2015, Godín got on the score sheet with a classic bullet header from a set piece - a Simeone special. Godín held up Tiago's shirt in celebration, and like the "8" gesture against Sevilla, further underlined the spirit and togetherness that pulse through the team.
In the second half, Granada showed more attacking intent, stringing several decent attacks and corners together. The Atlético defense - now Europe's best, by the way - hung on, however, knowing one more moment of genius would put the game away. With 20 minutes to go, Torres nearly provided said moment, cutting inside and forcing Granada keeper Andrés Fernández into a super diving save. Granada pushed harder for the equalizer; Youssef El-Arabi narrowly missed the bar from long range with about 15 minutes left. There was some actual intensity at Los Cármenes, but the nervy moments soon came to an end after Óliver Torres played a tremendous pass into the box for an onrushing Antoine Griezmann, who rifled a left-footed shot into the roof of the net. 2-0, game over.
Atlético sank Granada to claim a fourth consecutive league win and a sixth consecutive victory in all competitions. The unbeaten run stands at 12 games heading into Tuesday's clash with Benfica. By taking things one game at a time - partido a partido - Atleti have quietly positioned themselves two points behind Barcelona by winning in a familiar manner: a set-piece goal and tough defending, melded with the genius of Griezmann.
One game closer to TIago's return. Partido a partido.