Atletico and Celta meet again in the final installment of Atletico's Copa del Rey quarter-final and after the 1st leg 0-0 draw, nothing is any clearer as to who will progress. With neither team favourites to win any trophy they are competing in this year, it would be wise for both teams to invest in the Copa del Rey as a means of winning silverware and that is the importance we have seen invested in it so far.
Any draw result would be enough for Celta to progress to the semi-finals with the effect of the away goal. Meanwhile, Atleti need a victory in the Vicente Calderon to make it through to the next round. It is also worth remembering that another 0-0 would result in 30 minutes of extra time and penalties if we are all square after that.
'Toto' Berizzo, Celta's coach, decided to focus on the Cup match and rested his key players in Celta's game at the weekend. Iago Aspas, Orellana and Guidetti, among others, did not play one minute and it cost him and his squad a painful defeat (3-0) against Rayo Vallecano. As for the make-up of the Galician team, there is mention of the absence of Nolito again. The forward has recovered from his injury concerns but is being kept out of the firing line with interest from Barcelona remaining high.
Simeone discussed the importance of the Copa and hinted at what most fans have worried about lately in referring to breaking teams down: "We know the difficulty of the match. The rival has improved a lot. It will be an intense game. We play every match as a final and we have affection and respect for La Copa. Some teams have started to find a way to make us suffer and so we will look for a way to break the pressure." The manager was also asked his thoughts on the importance of the Barcelona game next weekend: "even if we rest 10 players today it does not mean we will win the next match. There is nothing beyond Celta."
Journalists also raised several questions regarding the transfer market: "During transfer windows we are always uneasy. We hope that what is decided will allow us to be competitive and the players who stay are happy. There will always be boys that are worried about the amount of minutes they play. We will look for the best solution for everyone." Regarding Torres' contract renewal question, the Argentine answered: "We have talked to him. He told me what he thinks and Fernando knows what I think. The talk stays private, but we are at peace."
Regarding the controversy surrounding the schedule of the Derbi, Cholo left the following quotes: "In life there are excuses and realities. We live with realities. We can only be ready and strong. I am focused on this game against Celta. There is still quite some time to go before the Derbi and it can be dangerous not being alert ahead of Tomorrow's match".
(All quotes via @la_colchoneria)
No secrets discussed
Simeone wanted to give all the importance to the Copa del Rey match, despite having another key game on Saturday. For this reason, the coach refused to give away any clues as to his opponent and it is still unknown which players he is going to have available for the clash against Celta Vigo. It is the first time this has happened since Cholo became the coach of Atletico Madrid.
At a push, trying to guess the manager's thoughts, we can expect a team that looks the exact same or similar as the starting XI chosen for the first leg. Therefore, the XI could be made up of a combination of usual starters with other players who have been playing cup matches. If one had to bet on a teamsheet, it would be: Moya; Gamez, Savic, Godin, Filipe; Gabi, Saul, Koke; Carrasco, Griezmann, Jackson.