Season in review: Homesick Atletico Madrid accidentally talks about revolution


Story of the season

It's easy to forget at the beginning of the season that Atletico Madrid they were – more usually – dark horses for the Liga title, after an excellent first half of 2023. Antoine Griezmann was the best player in Spain in that calendar year, and they started well. An early 7-0 win over Rayo Vallecano, and a 3-1 win over Real Madrid were good reasons for optimism, the only black mark on their form was the only 3-0 loss away to Valencia.

Except it kept happening. Again and again, Atlético went away from home and were completely outplayed by the opposition. The defensive structure gradually disintegrated, and when he returned in the second half of the season a little, Alvaro Morata had stopped scoring. Huge wins over Inter and Real Madrid showed what they were capable of, and so they defeated Athletic Club, Barcelona and Borussia Dortmund.

Eventually he saw Athletic Club challenge for the Champions League, and finished eight points above Los Leones, and five off Girona, but the reality is that they were closer to the Basques in performance. Worst defensive season since Simeon arrived

Explanation of the degree

A season defined by inconsistency, their trip to the Champions League quarter-finals and victories over Los Blancos salvaged a season in which they finished below third for the first time since Simeone had a season full His long-term consistency is remarkable, but there seems little explanation for his inability to perform against Las Palmas and Cadiz.

Los Rojiblancos moved towards a more offensive system, but made it clear that they do not have the pieces to support that in a season. Even within the club, there have been disagreements between the players about whether this is a good season or not.

It's a season in which Atlético have given their fans moments they will remember forever, and their final positions in every competition have lived up to expectations. However, the direction of travel is decidedly lateral, and if it was really a good season, there would not be so many articles in the newspapers of Madrid about the revolution.

Outstanding moment: Antoine Griezmann drive down the line, finding his way past Vinicius Junior, and burst into the net against Real Madrid in extra time, in the Copa del Rey. Follia Metropolitano, I dream that the sequel is Rojiblanco.

Key player: It's all Antoine Griezmann. He became the club's top goalscorer in the club's history this season, and if it wasn't for an ankle injury, you never know if he could have pulled off more magic in Europe. Crack.

Seasonal surprise: Axel Witsel. After a decent season last year, Witsel has confusingly become Atlético's best defender this year. He also treated Vinicius as well as anyone this season. Props to Samuel Lino for an excellent debut year as well.

Glass half full

It seems that change is on the horizon. A fit Antoine Griezmann, dare you say it with a less streaky striker and a reformed backline makes this side look really good. There are some holes in this team, and he probably needs two seasons of work before Andrea Berta can rest easier, but they have shown how good they can be – they just raise the floor, traditionally Simeone's strong point.

Glass half empty

Many Atleti fans will only believe that the investment will come when the new players are presented in a red and white shirt. Since the deals for Thomas Lemar and Joao Felix, it has been a frugal approach – understandably so – but if Atletico don't commit to strengthening their squad properly, it could see them move away from the big two and they drag them closer to the free-for-all. below. Atletico can't cut corners, and they have to make signings that El Cholo really wants – Javi Galan and Caglar Soyuncu could be good players, the Metropolitano never had the chance to discover.

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