Atlético Madrid trained at their new home, the Wanda Metropolitano, on Friday ahead of the first game in the stadium against Málaga on Saturday. Coach Diego Simeone was highly impressed by the ground.
In a press conference ahead of the encounter, the Argentine said he expected nothing less than a pressure cooker atmosphere inside of the stadium across the other side the city of Madrid.
“When you arrive on to the playing pitch it is really impressive,” Simeone said.
“I imagine the fans will drive us on and I don’t see anything other than a pressure cooker atmosphere tomorrow. They will certainly play a role, especially with a closed stadium and people so close to the pitch.”
Simeone complimented the Málaga players ahead of the match, which will kick off at 20:45 on Saturday after an inauguration ceremony attended by King Felipe VI.
Feliz de entrenar por primera vez en mi nueva casa @Metropolitano pic.twitter.com/PEih0lbUO2— Saúl Ñiguez Esclapez (@saulniguez) September 15, 2017
However, he added that the Rojiblancos would have to play the game on their terms.
“We have to be alert because they have good players,” Simeone said.
“We have to play a game where we feel comfortable and where the fans can drive us on from the start.”
On the other side, Málaga coach Míchel said Atlético will be eager to get back to winning ways, especially with the return of talisman Antoine Griezmann.
“I think it’s coincidental that when he hasn’t played they have won, and when he has played they have drawn,” Míchel said.
“I hope that is the case tomorrow, because we are talking about an exceptional player, who is among the best in the world at the moment.”
The Madrileño said it he did not expect Simeone’s side to get too caught up in the occasion.
“Atlético has demonstrated for many years now that it is not a team that gets carried away with celebrations, as much as it is a historic day for them,” Míchel said. “We know the team’s qualities and it should be an incentive for us to go out and play well.”