The length in minutes of Álvaro Morata’s goal drought — which ended with a thumping 67th minute header from Kieran Trippier’s boot.
Morata had missed two earlier chances — one before the hour which was truly inexplicable, from a delicious João Félix flick. He didn’t miss this one. The Spain international found himself unmarked as Trippier’s free kick entered the box. Pervis Estupiñán partially obscured Sergio Herrera’s view, but the ball was going in anyway. It was no less than Atlético Madrid deserved following a good first half — which should have been great.
The saves made by Osasuna goalkeeper Herrera — several of the spectacular variety — in the first half.
The journeyman keeper came up through Alavés’ academy and his previous stops include Segunda B’s Amorebieta and current Segunda side Huesca. He joined Osasuna in the summer of 2017 and made just his third appearance this season on Saturday night. Watching the first half may have fooled one into thinking the 26-year-old was Jan Oblak.
Herrera’s first good save was a kick stop from a Félix chance. He followed that up with a powerful parry from a long-range Saúl attempt and a frankly amazing save from Félix’s looping header. Those heroics kept the Pamplona-based side in the game for 60-plus minutes.
Ángel Correa’s team-leading assist total this season. He set up Saúl Ñíguez’s 75th minute goal with a clever lay-off after he picked up the ball from an unselfish Morata. Saúl — who had moved to left back by this time — went on to lift a gentle shot beyond Herrera’s reach to seal all three points.
Starting left back Manu Sánchez’s age. The academy product was brilliant in preseason, but those summer displays did not translate to first-team minutes until Saturday night.
Those minutes came about after Renan Lodi took a knock to his ankle during Wednesday’s win over Lokomotiv Moscow — further evaluation concluded that it would be best to leave him out of the squad. Saúl and Mario Hermoso both can play left back, but Simeone opted to keep the former in his preferred position (for over an hour, at least).
Enter Manu, who produced an inspired 63-minute display and used space effectively to offer himself as a creative outlet. His standout moment was that near-assist for Félix in the first half.
The number of wins Atlético have rung up from the past 12 meetings with Osasuna. This time out, Atleti’s defense bottled up star striker Chimy Ávila on the way to a ninth clean sheet from 17 league games. But the visitors look as if they will secure survival earlier than normal after a great first half to the season.
Felipe Monteiro’s clearances, the eighth time in 17 overall appearances in which he has made at least that many. The ex-Corinthians center back has been a rock in this defense. Only Stefan Savić — who hasn’t played in two months — has recorded a better mark per 90 minutes.
There’s only one Juanfran Torres, who was given a special tribute ahead of a contest featuring the two most prominent clubs for which he played.