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Simeone: Atletico were hard done by

SoccerNews in La Liga 15 Feb 2013

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Atletico Madrid coach Diego Simeone believes his side deserved at least a draw in their 2-0 loss to Rubin Kazan on Thursday.

Atletico Madrid coach Diego Simeone believes his side deserved at least a draw in their 2-0 loss to Rubin Kazan on Thursday.

A Gokdeniz Karadeniz strike and Pablo Orbaiz’s late goal left Atletico on the brink of elimination from the Europa League, which they won last season.

Atletico played against 10 men for a half after Roman Sharonov was sent off at the Vicente Calderon.

Despite struggling to break down the visitors, Simeone said Atletico were worthy of at least a draw in the first leg of the round-of-32 tie.

“We did have two chances like you have pointed out, and I agree that in terms of moving the ball around we lacked speed in creating chances,” he said.

“We struggled to get into the game during the first half, while in the second half we tried to get into the match in a variety of different ways.

“That meant that they had to defend well. They showed great courage to keep a clean sheet and in the end we couldn’t nick a goal in a game which we deserved to draw at the very least, in my opinion.”

Simeone also took responsibility for Rubin Kazan’s second goal, which came after Atletico goalkeeper Sergio Asenjo went forward for a corner.

It resulted in a counter-attack and Roman Eremenko playing a pass into Orbaiz, who placed his finish into an empty net as Asenjo tried desperately to get back to his goal.

“The decision to have Asenjo come off his goal line was absolutely mine,” Simeone said.

“I thought that as the game was nearly over, a 1-1 result would give us a better chance because as we were losing 1-0 at that point, we would have been forced to score one or two goals in the away leg.

“Football is a risky business. Obviously those who sit around and watch don’t take risks because it is much easier for them, but given our position we took a risk, knowing the possible repercussions.

“This time it didn’t work out but I take full responsibility. It resulted in them getting a second goal, and now it means instead of once, we now need to score twice when we play them away.”

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