A new era at Atlético Madrid began Saturday night, as los colchoneros beat Málaga 1-0 in the first game at Estadio Wanda Metropolitano. A crowd exceeding 63,000 was on hand to witness Antoine Griezmann fire Diego Simeone’s side to a victory, and both men plus Fernando Torres spoke about the home opener after it ended.
On arriving at the stadium and viewing the pre-kickoff festivities: “Since I played as a footballer and since I became a coach, I’ve never seen anything like it. It will stay with me my entire life...the flags waving all together, the fans participating as if they wanted to enter on to the pitch. Exciting, sincerely exciting, and something spectacular for the people who could watch it on television.”
On Atlético’s performance: “We played a good match. It was a bit hard offensively, and then with a genius play on the flank from Ángelito [Correa], we scored the goal.”
On what it meant to be the first goalscorer at Estadio Wanda Metropolitano: “Personally, I’m proud of the goal, to write my name in the history of the club, in the history of the stadium, and hopefully many more will come.”
On the stadium’s atmosphere: “We trained here on Thursday, but we lacked the 12th player [the fans]. This is the best stadium I’ve played in.”
On the fan experience at the Wanda Metropolitano’s grand opening: “I think that it’s been a fiesta for all the Atléticos. I think they’ve enjoyed a stadium that wouldn’t have been possible without them, without us, without those who have helped the club reach the level it’s at today.”
On the players adjusting to life away from the Calderón: “It [the match] felt like a final, we still did not see it as our home. From now on, it will be easier because we’ll start making memories...we have started making it our own.
Of course, the most important thing is the result, because everything is nicer when you win. We are off to a good start, and from here, we’ll dream of living big nights [at this stadium].”