The Atlético de Madrid touched the sky at Anfield on March 11, 2020. ‘Only’, like this in quotes, was a match that meant the pass to the quarterfinals of the Champions League, but for all that it meant, it was a night that will remain for always in the memory of all mattresses.
Nothing foreshadowed after ‘Marcos Llorente’s day’ that the rojiblanco team would begin a journey through the desert in the greatest continental competition. And that before that tie against him Liverpool, Atlético had already shown more than one sample of weakness in the Champions League, to the point that in 17/18 they were eliminated in the group stage, which gave them the possibility of winning the Europa League a few months later in Lyon and then the European Super Cup against him Real Madrid in Tallinn.
Since the Champions League final in Milan, Atlético has choked on this tournament, but it was after the Anfield feat that the slope became much steeper. Because since that night, the Madrid team has only won three of the 14 games it has played. A fact that makes clear the relationship that Atlético now maintains with its prohibited competition.
The winding road started in Lisbon, with the quarterfinals against him Leipzig a single party. (2-1) for the Germans. Already in the group stage of 20/21, Atlético was only able to win at Salzburg, in Madrid and Austria. He didn’t do it with him Lokomotiv of Moscow, neither in the first leg nor the return and fell with forcefulness before the Bayern in Munich (4-0) although then he started a point in the Metropolitan. The rojiblancos went to eighth, although there the Chelsea, then European champion, passed over.
And this season, worse
And what to say about this season. Only one win in the five group stage matches, the one achieved against the Milan, in discount, penalty and with the expulsion of Kessie after half an hour of play. The rest, a draw against him Porto (to whom they annulled a goal in the final stretch of the clash) and three defeats, both against the Liverpool and Wednesday’s at the Metropolitano.
In total, three wins, four draws and seven losses since Atlético eliminated Liverpool at Anfield. In just over a year and a half, the Champions League has become a torture for the mattress team. There are still options to reverse the situation, but the dynamics show the reality of the rojiblancos in the largest continental tournament.