‘Set’ from Atlético to Celtic on their route to the Champions League round of 16

The colchoneros look to the next round after a very comfortable victory at home


Atlético de Madrid beat Celtic FC 6-0 this Tuesday at the Cívitas Metropolitano, with doubles included from Antoine Griezmann and Álvaro Morata, in a match corresponding to matchday 4 of the Champions League, within a Group And where the colchoneros took a huge step towards the next round thanks to this result.

With the Atlético stadium full and with no apparent commotion despite the large Scottish fans, the locals started well protected at the back and ‘stung’ in their first dangerous approach to the goal defended by Joe Hart. Following a corner from the right, the red and white attack continued on the opposite side and the ball went out, remaining in their possession.

As soon as he took a throw-in, Rodrigo Riquelme crossed to the penalty spot and Callum McGregor headed a deflection; but the Celtic captain’s clearance, perhaps soft, fell at the feet of Antoine Griezmann and he executed a low left foot shot that slipped into the rival goal, very close to the post.

Hart could do little, as he already saw his goal pierced after six minutes, which gave Atlético more room to manage the game. Before reaching the quarter of an hour, Riquelme made a counterattack in slalom, with a ‘Maradonian’ air and that culminated in a shot without a prize from the crown of the area, as the ball ran into McGregor’s leg.

It was the prelude to another key play: the expulsion of Daizen Maeda in the 23rd minute due to a harsh tackle with his studs on Mario Hermoso. Although the Slovak referee Ivan Kruzliak had initially shown him a yellow card, he corrected his decision after consulting the VAR. His direct red card left the team coached by Brendan Rodgers crestfallen.

The colchoneros tried to take advantage of this right afterwards, thanks to another mischief from Riquelme to pass with a pseudo-vaseline and with his back to Griezmann; But inside the area, leaning, Atlético’s ‘7’ shot wide with his left foot. Almost without ideas up front, Celtic only responded during the first half thanks to the set pieces.

Just before half an hour, the Glasgow team came close to scoring on a corner where Álvaro Morata was their involuntary ally. The ball bounced in the small area and the home forward made a poor clearance that put his teammate Jan Oblak, who has quick reflexes, in trouble.

Beyond that incident, the Slovenian goalkeeper had witnessed in luxury how Atlético dominated and dominated; yes, without materializing the 2-0. Nahuel Molina tried it with a strong volley from his right lane, after a cross from Griezmann, who went wide. And Ángel Correa didn’t get it right either in the 32nd minute, with a high header from another corner.

Morata, looking to redeem that previous bad clearance, prowled the goal in the 40th minute; However, despite beating Hart with an agonizing shot in a muddled play, everything was canceled when he was declared offside. Starting with three forwards was working for Diego Pablo Simeone’s plan, but only half, so Celtic were still alive.

To deal a second blow to the ‘victim’, Griezmann was in charge of manufacturing the ideal attack. After a corner kick taken by himself, the action continued with the red-and-white centre-backs still up; A robbery in three quarters of the field caused ‘Grizi’ to cross long from the right to the far post, seeing that Josema Giménez arrived in a rush.

The defender unmarked himself behind Alistair Johnston and assisted with a header towards the penalty spot, where Morata pushed the goal into the net with his right boot. It was the penultimate play of the first half and the Madrid striker’s scoring streak continued from strength to strength.

Upon returning from the locker room, Correa looked for the third on two clear occasions. The first was through a dribble to Liam Scales combined with an outside shot, which Hart caught; and the second in another personal play on the right wing, until he rushed the baseline and hooked a strong shot that the Celtic goalkeeper sent for a corner kick.

Shortly thereafter, Giménez hit the crossbar with a header from a set piece. The annoyance about Hart was incessant and materialized with the 3-0 in the 60th minute, the work of Griezmann in a semi-chile; A cross to the long post was aimed at Riquelme, but a visiting defender cut the ball, with the bad luck of serving it on a plate to the French forward.

Rodgers made an immediate double change, but Simeone’s bet worked out better. Having introduced Saúl Ñíguez and Samu Lino onto the field, the latter scored the beautiful 4-0 (66′). Paired with Johnston at the top of the area, he dribbled past the Canadian right back and shot quickly on goal; that Lino ball became poisoned as he moved away, beating Hart.

Just three minutes later, Correo persevered in its search for the goal, sending a low and crossed shot against the post. The Glasgow team was a shadow of what it had been in its previous duel with Atlético, then in the heat of its stands. But on this occasion, weighed down by playing almost the entire match with one man less, he received a correction.


Morata sealed the ‘little hand’ in the 77th minute, attentive to the edge of the area to pick up a loose ball and connect a volley with his right foot; Without any option for Hart, the 5-0 was a reality and the ‘Cholo’ pupils were reunited with themselves after several strange days due to the league defeat against UD Las Palmas.

Hart had not finished his horrible night’s work and, in the 83rd minute, he easily saved a left-footed shot from Marcos Llorente from the edge of the area. Llorente himself made it 6-0 right after, reaching the baseline to cross to the opposite side; Lino made a powerful shot, which did not find the goal but found Saúl ready to finish.

It took Saúl a second attempt to send that ball into the back of the net, while the Scottish defense was nothing more than a broken toy. The world had come crashing down on Hart on the pitch of a Cívitas Metropolitano that he enjoyed, especially with the three golden points that this victory meant for his team.

Leadership for ‘Cholo’ in Group E, with eight points and seeing a clearer route to the round of 16. Celtic, for their part, remained bottom and with only one point in their locker with only two days left to settle the group stage; Those from Glasgow barely have any options to hunt down Feyenoord or Lazio.


–RESULT: ATLÉTICO DE MADRID, 6 – CELTIC, 0 (2-0, at halftime).


ATLÉTICO DE MADRID: Oblak; Molina (Azpilicueta, min.71), Giménez (Söyüncü, min.78), Witsel, Hermoso, Riquelme (Lino, min.65); Barrios (Llorente, min.46), Koke, Griezmann (Saúl, min.65); Correa and Morata.

CELTIC: Hart; Johnston, Scales, Carter-Vickers, Taylor; O’Riley (Holm, min.46), McGregor (Iwata, min.71), Bernardo (Turnbull, min.61); Maeda, Furuhashi (Yang, min.61) y Palma (Oh, min.46).


1-0, min.6: Griezmann.

2-0, min.45+2: Morata.

3-0, min.60: Griezmann.

4-0, min.66: Lino.

5-0, min.77: Morata.

6-0, min.85: Saúl.

–REFEREE: Ivan Kruzliak (SVK). He yellow carded Söyüncü (min.90) at Atlético de Madrid, and Palma (min.36) at Celtic; Maeda was sent off with a direct red card (min.23) at Celtic.

–STADIUM: Cívitas Metropolitano, 60,863 spectators.