Diego Simeone was pleased with his team’s effort after Atletico Madrid came away from the Camp Nou with a 1-1 draw in the first leg of the teams’ UEFA Champions League Quarterfinal series. Simeone was full of praise for substitute Diego Ribas, who came on for the injured Diego Costa and scored the game’s opening goal with a magnificent strike from distance in the 56th minute.
“He had a complete game and I’m happy,” the Atleti coach said. “I and the team needed him.” The Argentine also singled-out goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois for making a series of excellent saves to deny Barca’s attack. Overall, “The team did a great job in a match of two different styles. Everyone did their best,” Simeone said, adding: “I’m very happy with the effort and the result, but it is still open. The return leg will be difficult and exciting.”
Meanwhile, AS on Monday reported that Diego Costa will most likely miss the return-leg at the Vicente Calderon, after the striker limped off with a hamstring injury. While he did not suffer a tear, Costa told the media that he would not be available by next Wednesday.