clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

“We are with the manager to the death”: Postmatch reaction signals deep problems at Atlético

Atlético Madrid are in free-fall, the fans are angry and the players accept there is a problem.

Atletico de Madrid v RCD Espanyol - LaLiga Santander Photo by Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno/Getty Images

Atlético Madrid are mired in the worst crisis of Diego Simeone’s 12-year reign at the club. After exiting Europe on Wednesday night and being beaten by Cádiz the weekend before, the Rojiblancos drew 1-1 with 10-man Espanyol on Sunday.

“Psychologically, we are not right, for sure,” Jan Oblak said after the game, summing up what everyone watching had already figured out. “It’s not normal what’s happening to us. Our bodies aren’t working as they need to, either. We had a lot of chances but we lacked calm up front, it’s something in our heads. Without calm, we won’t get the results we have to.

“You have to take advantage of the chances, and we aren’t doing it.”

Oblak also spoke about the anger fans are feeling from recent results. The Frente Atlético refused to take up their normal seats in the Fondo Sur until after halftime in protest of the team’s sliding form.

“It’s understandable from the fans. Nobody is happy, us first,” Oblak said. “With a better atmosphere things are easier, but their anger is understandable.”

Jose Giménez gave Simeone a vote of confidence, attempting to ensure that there are no problems within the group.

Atletico Madrid v Espanyol - La Liga Santander Photo by David S. Bustamante/Soccrates/Getty Images

“Obviously we are with Simeone,” he said. “This is a family, we are united and there are no ruptures within the group. We are with the manager to the death.”

Simeone, for his part, thinks the penalty miss against Bayer Leverkusen 10 days ago has ruined his team’s confidence.

“If we had scored the penalty against Bayer, we would be talking about an epic comeback by Atlético, we would have played with a different energy against Cádiz and in a different way against Porto,” he said. “But it didn’t happen.”