Diego Simeone has said that the unexpected is one of life’s pleasures as his team head into Wednesday’s Champions League game against Roma with their chances of progression very limited.
Asked at the pregame news conference at the Wanda Metropolitano to give the odds Atletico might progress, the Rojiblanco coach said he was not a betting man but did trust in life to provide positive surprises and his team would do everything they could to keep their chances alive.
“I never bet so I cannot answer that,” Simeone said. “But aside from this situation, the club has a high ranking and we will attempt to keep that in every game. The nicest thing about life is that things can happen that you never expect.”
Simeone accepted that Atletico’s out of form attacker Antoine Griezmann would be “worried” by going eight games without a club goal, but said the reported Barcelona target needed support and calm to return to scoring.
“It is normal that he is worried,” Simeone said. “He needs a goal. In many games where he has not scored, he has had chances. But when he does not score, he suffers, it shows in the team, and the fans have a bad time.
“He is an extraordinary footballer. We have to give him confidence and calm. He will get back to normal at some point.”
“I respect the opinion of Antoine’s brother, the same as other people’s opinions,” he said. “But they are two different people. He needs to find himself again, return to scoring. He has a brilliant future ahead of him, and excellent present.
“He must understand when he is criticised by the fans. He has given us a lot in four years here, so it is normal that the fans expect a lot from him. As they did from me back in the day, and to other important players who have been at this club.”
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