Diego Simeone noted that Atletico Madrid’s squad players would have to step up in the remaining weeks of the La Liga season following injuries to top scorer Diego Costa and playmaker Arda Turan. Atletico is the surprise leader in the Spanish league with seven games to play, but it sits just one point clear of defending champ Barcelona and three points clear of third-place Real Madrid. The Spanish capital club is also currently locked in a 1-1 draw with Barcelona after the first-leg of the UEFA Champions League quarterfinal.
In particular, the Argentine, who as a player won the league with Atleti in 1996, singled out Diego Ribas, Jose Sosa, Cristian Rodriguez, Adrian, Emiliano Insua and Toby Alderweireld as being crucial to the club’s chances of silverware in the final weeks of the season. "I have always said it. They have a key role to play in bringing quality to the time the coach decides to give them on the pitch," Simeone said. "Everything we have achieved has been due to a great deal of effort and humility. We have our weapons and in taking each game at a time we are looking to be competitive against anyone."
Atletico faces Villarreal at the Vicente Calderon on Saturday, before the return-leg of its UCL quarterfinal with Barca on Wednesday, which is also at home.