Monday, June 21, 2021

Atletico Madrid 1-1 Valencia: Dani Parejo Saves Valencia With Stunning Free Kick

Juan Pablo Aravena in Editorial, La Liga 19 Oct 2019

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Atletico Madrid and Valencia met this Saturday at Wanda Metropolitano, and the match between these two Liga giants didn’t disappoint. Los Colchoneros opened the score with a penalty scored by Diego Costa, but Dani Parejo evened the game with a free kick late in the second half. As a result, these two Champions League representatives played out to a 1-1 draw

Atletico Madrid dominate and grab the lead deservedly in the first half

The match started quite tight and neither side managed to pose a major threat during the first 15 minutes. The real first chance came in the 17th minute when Thomas Partey, arguably one of Atletico’s best players so far this season, tested Jesper Cillessen with a shot from outside the box. His effort went over the bar, however, posing little to no threat in Valencia’s goal.

Los Che couldn’t do much on the attacking end, as evidenced by the fact that only mustered a 45% of possession and one shot on target. But the game changed out of nowhere past the halfway mark due to a handball by Denis Cheryshev. The referee had to check the potential penalty with the VAR and, after a while, the Russia international was charged with the infraction.

Diego Costa, who had a scoring chance earlier in the 22nd minutes with an attempt that went wide off the post, didn’t make a mistake here. The former Spain international coolly buried the ball past Cillessen to score the opener.

Valencia couldn’t bounce back before the half-time whistle and, as a result, the first half finished with a 1-0 win for Los Colchoneros. It was a deserved lead for Diego Simeone’s men, as they were in complete control during most of the first half.

Cheryshev wasted Valencia’s best chance to score…

Valencia chose to start the second half with a more aggressive approach and Cheryshev came close to score in the 54th minute. In what was Valencia’s clearer scoring throughout the entire match, the Russian sneaked into the box and left the keeper behind, but his effort rattled off the crossbar.

The visitors crumbled after that scoring and never threatened Jan Oblak the rest of the way. Atletico responded and sent both Thomas Lemar and Renan Lodi to the pitch. The former Monaco star quickly made his presence felt with a direct free kick, but Cillessen saved his attempt with ease.

…but Dani Parejo saves Valencia with a stunning free kick

Both sides made several changes down the stretch and at one point, it seemed Los Colchoneros were header towards a win at home. But Daniel Parejo had other plans. The former Spain international tied the game in the 82nd minute with an impressive free kick that left Oblak stranded. It has been one of the best goals of the Liga season so far.

Parejo had another chance to score in the 84th minute, but Oblak denied him with a save. And Los Che ended with 10 players after substitute Kang-In Lee, who entered the contest in the 78th minute, with a straight red card.

All things considered, it was a fair draw given how the match happened. Atletico were better early on, but Valencia bounced back after the break and that was enough to give them a point in a tough venue such as the Wanda Metropolitano.

Match Report

Atletico Madrid: Oblak (5); Arias (5), Felipe (5), Gimenez (6), Hermoso (5) (Renan Lodi (6), 54’); Joao Felix (5), Koke (6), Thomas (7) (Lemar (5), 54’), Saul (7); Diego Costa (7), Morata (6) (Marcos Llorente (5), 68’)

Bench: Adan (GK), Trippier, Herrera, Correa

Valencia: Cillessen (5); Wass (6), Garay (5), Gabriel (6), Costa (6); Kondogbia (5) (Gameiro (5), 65’); Ferran Torres (5) (Soler (5), 71’), Coquelin (4), Dani Parejo (7), Cheryshev (5) (Kang-in Lee (3), 78’); Gomez (6)

Bench: Domenech (GK), Diakhaby, Thierry Correia, Vallejo

Goals: Diego Costa (1-0, PK, 36’), Dani Parejo (1-1, 82’)

Referee: Adrian Cordero Vega

Yellow Cards: Thomas, Joao Felix (ATL); Cheryshev (VAL)

Red Cards: Kang-in Lee (VAL)

Attendance: 61,603


Juan Pablo Aravena

A freelance writer and sports analyst with almost five years of experience in the industry before joining SoccerNews, Juan Pablo Aravena is based in Chile and currently contributes to several publications and websites including SoccerNews, 12up, and Sports From The Basement, while also working as a fantasy beat writer for RotoWire, as a database editor for EA Sports, and as a football analyst for SmartOdds and InsideFutbol. His areas of focus are Serie A, Bundesliga, Premier League, LaLiga, and Ligue 1, but he has also written about MLS and South American football in the past.



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