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Simeone defends Mourinho approach

Atletico Madrid boss Diego Simeone has defended Chelsea counterpart Jose Mourinho over the Portuguese’s supposed negative tactics.

Mourinho was accused of “parking two buses” by Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers on Sunday, as Chelsea came away from Anfield with a 2-0 victory to blow the Premier League title race wide open.

The former Real Madrid coach also attracted criticism for a defensive display as Chelsea drew 0-0 with Atletico in last week’s UEFA Champions League semi-final first leg at Vicente Calderon.

Speaking ahead of Wednesday’s return leg, however, Simeone was quick to back Mourinho and stated that variety is good for football.

“If we played all the same, it would be boring,” he said. “For that reason football is beautiful. You can win with 10 players at the back, with 10 forward and with 10 in the middle plus the keeper.

“I am very respectful of football in general. There are different ways to win a game. Everyone chooses the most appropriate for the team you have.

“Defending is not easy and when a team is doing very well, you have to congratulate them. Attacking, as well, you have to be congratulated if is done right.”

Victory for Atletico would mean a first final appearance in Europe’s premier competition since 1974.

And Simeone said his charges will give their all to book a place in Lisbon.

“It is normal before an important match that the confidence of the players must appear,” he added.

“The boys, as you see, are very excited. They will give it their best. They will have to make a huge effort.”

Tue 29 Apr, 2014
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