Diego Simeone hailed the determination of his players after watching his Atletico Madrid side successfully adapt to difficult conditions during their 2-0 victory La Liga at Celta Vigo.
Inclement weather on Sunday, which had initially threatened to force a postponement at Balaidos, caused the playing surface to cut up and swift passing football to become all but impossible.
Atleti though still found a way to grind out a 10th victory from their past 12 outings in La Liga.
Antoine Griezmann and Yannick Ferreira Carrasco scored the second-half goals which broke Celta and Simeone heaped praise on his players’ perseverance after the match.
“We’ve gone from low to high in the game. That was our idea. We knew it was going to be a game in which the legs were going to go (because of the state of the pitch),” he said.
“In the first 20 minutes the team suffered but then started playing better. And then in the second half they understood how to handle the game without the ball. We are doing well and this win gives us energy to prepare for the cup game on Thursday,” he added, referring to the Copa del Rey clash at home to Rayo Vallecano.
Simeone expressed his pleasure at how Atleti continue to work hard for each other in pursuit of the Spanish title, with the victory returning his team, surprise champions in 2013-14, to the top of the table.
“The guys who have come in the summer are growing and that gives us options in attack and solutions,” he said. “Neither [set of players] are better nor worse than the other but we have a group that is prepared to compete at any time.”
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