Atletico defender Diego Godin admits it hurt a little less to see Barcelona lift the La Liga trophy instead of bitter rivals Real Madrid.
A final-day win over Granada saw Barca clinch a back-to-back league crowns, beating Madrid by just one point.
Atleti finished three points behind the eventual champions but saw their title race come to an end after a 2-1 loss to Levante in the penultimate round.
While Godin said it was hard to see Atleti come up just short, he was relieved that Barca managed to lift the trophy over their Madrid rivals.
“If Barcelona win the league it hurts less, because our city rivals are Real Madrid,” the Uruguayan international told COPE.
“I do not hate them or anything, I have a lot of respect for Real Madrid, but I always want to beat them.”
Atleti are preparing to face Madrid in the Champions League final on Saturday in a rematch of the 2014 final in Lisbon, which the former lost 4-1 after extra time.
“We have taken a lot of experiences out of the Lisbon game. We know how we have to play against Real Madrid and ahead of the game we are positive,” Godin added.
“We will put in a very tactical and physical game, and I think it will be decided by very little details. The team arrive in a very good physical condition for the final.
“We will compete at 150%. We know people say we are favourites after we eliminated Barca and Bayern [Munich], but a game against Madrid is always 50/50.”
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