Atlético Femenino passed the maturity test with flying colours.
The rojiblancas managed to secure qualification to the UEFA Women’s Champions League last 16 for the first time in their history last week, as they dumped out two-time semifinalists Manchester City by a 3-1 aggregate scoreline.
After a 1-1 draw in Madrid — salvaged courtesy of a Kenti Robles goal in the 88th minute — the momentum shifted towards the Citizens due to their experience on the continental stage and because they were going to host the second leg. Atlético were called upon to put up a solid display in order to keep their qualification hopes alive — and they did just that.
Atleti controlled the game and produced a commanding showing, dominating their opponents throughout majority of the encounter. The Spanish champions made sure of qualification in the first half, when they opened a two-goal lead through Silva Meseguer and Ludmila.
Meseguer’s goal arrived after a well-engineered move which caught Manchester City’s backline napping, and she had the simplest of tasks in netting the ball into an empty net. Ludmila’s goal was a special one, as she ran half the field with the ball at her feet, winning the contrast with City’s skipper Stephanie Houghton before slotting the ball into the near post to the delight of Atleti’s bench.
In the next round, José Luis Sánchez’s women will be handed a stern test against continental powers Wolfsburg. This is the side that humiliated Atlético 15-2 on aggregate in last year’s edition. Therefore, the two-time defending Liga Iberdrola champions are eager to redeem themselves following that embarrassing result.
The last 16 legs will be played on Oct. 17 and Oct. 31, with Atleti hosting the second leg.
Following the famous result at City, Atlético resumed normal business on the domestic scene as they defeated Granadilla Tenerife 2-0 on home soil.
Atleti forged ahead through Ludmila who capitalised on a well-engineered move. They made sure of the win through Amanda Sampedro, and they have now chalked out four wins from as many games played in this year’s championship.