Gutsy Atletico given hope after surprise win over Liverpool

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Gutsy Atletico given hope after surprise win over Liverpool

Tuesday, February 18, 2020

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Madrid, Spain (AFP) — Liverpool were the victims of an old-fashioned Atletico Madrid masterclass yesterday as Diego Simeone's side ground out a 1-0 win in Madrid to give themselves hope of reaching the Champions League quarter-finals.

Saul Niguez raised the roof at a bouncing Wanda Metropolitano by scoring in the fourth minute before Atletico's defence kicked in, suffocating the European champions and denying them a single shot on target. “Tonight is one of those nights you don't forget,” said Simeone.

“We haven't gone through but we have beaten the best team in the world.”

If Alvaro Morata had not slipped at the crucial moment, Atleti might even have taken a two-goal lead to Anfield, where they can expect an onslaught next month.

“We are not 5-0 down,” said Jurgen Klopp.

“We don't think it will be easy but as long as we can get 11 players in Liverpool shirts we will give everything we have. And for all the Liverpool fans that can get a ticket — welcome to Anfield.”

If Liverpool remain favourites to go through, the roar from the Atleti fans at the final whistle, aimed at their fist-pumping players on the pitch, suggested Simeone's team now have belief.

DORTMUND EDGED PSG 2-1

Dortmund, Germany (AFP) — Teenage record-breaker Erling Braut Haaland scored twice as Borussia Dortmund sealed a 2-1 win over Paris Saint-Germain, for whom Neymar scored on his return to action, in yesterday's Champions League last 16, first leg in Germany.

Forward Haaland took his tally to 11 goals in seven games since Dortmund paid Salzburg 20 million euros (US$22 million) for the 19-year-old with second- half goals either side of Neymar's equaliser.

Having also scored eight times for Salzburg in the group stage, Haaland now has 10 goals in just seven Champions League games this season.

“These are the moments you play football for. I really enjoyed it,” beamed the Norwegian, who insisted Dortmund will still have it all to do in the return on March 11.


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