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Athletic Club 2-0 Atlético Madrid: Player Ratings

Oh, joy.

Athletic Club v Club Atletico de Madrid - La Liga Santander Photo by Ion Alcoba/Quality Sport Images/Getty Images


Not at fault for Athletic Club’s eighth-minute opener. Iñaki Williams’s panenka did him in for the second goal. 5


Not a right-back or a right-wingback and Diego Simeone needs to stop playing him there right away. Like Saúl Ñíguez before him, Marcos Llorente is a unique talent and the versatility he has is being abused because Simeone is too stubborn and the squad hasn’t been properly planned. 5

Athletic Club v Club Atletico de Madrid - La Liga Santander Photo by Juan Manuel Serrano Arce/Getty Images


His first appearance in four weeks. Lost his balance marking Iñaki Williams on the opening goal and had trouble with the speedy Athletic attacker all night. Really missed the calming presence of the suspended Stefan Savić next to him. 3.5


Making his second consecutive start, Hermoso was booked 45 seconds in for fouling Raúl García and then knocked Iñaki Williams’s eighth-minute cross into his own net. Settled down as the game moved along, but the damage was already done. 2.5


Out of control and let the game’s emotional component take over. Booked inside 20 minutes (meaning he will miss next week’s contest against Real Madrid) and nearly got himself sent off for bumping referee Mateu Lahoz. Removed at halftime. 3.5


Classy on the ball in his own third, but his output in the areas of the pitch that matter remains inconsistent — especially crossing accurately and delivering diagonal balls, essential qualities for a Simeone full-back to have. 4.5

Athletic Club V Atletico De Madrid - La Liga Photo By Ricardo Larreina/Europa Press via Getty Images


Returned to the starting 11 after a whopping six weeks out due to international commitments and a subsequent injury. Unable to find time and space on the ball in the first half, passing with under 70 percent accuracy and frequently seen retreating into defense. He brought down Iker Muniain lazily for a 56th-minute penalty, which Iñaki buried. 1


Came close to equalizing on an outside-the-box effort late in the first half. Made four interceptions in the opening 45 minutes, and showed again that he has enough quality to be a top-drawer pivot if not for his limited passing range. 6


Consistently Atlético Madrid’s only penalty area presence in the first 45 minutes. His combination play with both Llorente and Renan Lodi leaves much to be desired. 5


Dropped into the midfield line at the start, which is good because Griezmann’s best position now is as a deep-lying, defensively-aware wide playmaker. Perhaps Simeone is realizing this, but later in the first half, Griezmann moved further up to support Luis Suárez. This proved problematic, because neither forward appears physically capable anymore of fashioning chances for a coach who prefers a counterattacking style. In the second half, the Frenchman hit the crossbar from a free kick. 4

Athletic Club v Club Atletico de Madrid - La Liga Santander Photo by Juan Manuel Serrano Arce/Getty Images


One tame shot on target in the first half, and that was all. 2


Replaced Reinildo at halftime. Made a quick impact, winning a free kick that Antoine Griezmann lashed off the bar, but fizzled out thereafter as he got lost in the forward shuffle. Sums up his season, really. 4

De Paul

Replaced Kondogbia on 64 minutes. The Argentine’s struggles continue — playing as a holding midfielder, De Paul set up a half-chance for Ángel Correa in the final five minutes but was simply too far from goal to contribute properly aside from hoofing hopeful crosses. 4


Replaced Herrera on 64 minutes. Stationed on the left in a playmaking role, the captain finished with zero key passes and under 75 percent passing accuracy. 3.5



Replaced Carrasco on 64 minutes. Finally, a proper counterattacking outlet. Showed commitment to winning the ball but lacked service to put it in the back of the net. 4


Replaced Suárez on 70 minutes. Simeone’s idea with this change was to set Llorente free in midfield, but Vrsaljko’s attacking output is so minimal that the Spain international remained starved for service. 3