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Simeone calms expectations after derby triumph

Atletico Madrid coach Diego Simeone says the weekend’s derby victory over Real Madrid was no more important than any other away win in their La Liga title challenge.

Simeone’s side became the first team to win three consecutive games at the Santiago Bernabeu in the Spanish top flight – bolstering their title hopes at the expense of their city rivals.

Atletico sit eight points adrift of leaders Barcelona ahead of their clash with Real Sociedad on Tuesday, the champions having come from behind to beat Sevilla 2-1 on Sunday.

Luis Enrique’s men are back in action against Rayo Vallecano on Thursday, but Simeone urged his side to stay focused, acknowledging the likelihood that the title will remain at Camp Nou this term.

“I saw the Barca game yesterday, nothing changes my way of thinking,” he said.

“We have a clear objective to outdo ourselves and we want to keep improving and to do that means playing a good game tomorrow, regardless of what Barcelona do.

“For Barca it is very difficult for them to lose, they are the best. But this is something we have made happen with hard work, those wins just give us statistics and records but we just take it as any other victory away from home.

“We go back home to the Calderon on Tuesday with a lot of enthusiasm, we expect a full stadium and have great expectations after Saturday’s win.

“We need the support of our people, this is our fourth game in 10 days, so we need to have the crowd behind us.”

Mon 29 Feb, 2016
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