Morales celebrates his goal against Atlético this Saturday at the Wanda.Manu Fernandez / A
P In two games, Levante has punctured the wide mattress that Atlético enjoyed to line up the last third of the season as virtual champions. Real Madrid and Barcelona are facing their great opportunity that it can be proclaimed that the League has really narrowed.
If Paco López's team already started a draw at the Ciutàt de Valencia on Wednesday, yesterday they gave the leader their first defeat at home from the course. He was better in the first half and in the second he resisted protected by his goalkeeper. Cárdenas took over with resolution and brilliance from Aitor Fernández, in which he was the great surprise in the visiting line-up. On his figure, his team survived when he was rushed in the second act. In the first, Levante set the pace.
AtléticoOblak, Giménez (Lemar, min. 53), Felipe Monteiro, Mario Hermoso, Marcos Llorente, Renan Augusto, Kondogbia (Lucas Torreira, min. 60), Koke (Dembele, min. 73), Luis Suárez, Correa (Ricard Sánchez, min. 60) and João Félix-Levante, Daniel Cárdenas, Róber, Óscar Duarte, Vezo, Toño García (Clerc, min. 70), Coke (Son, min. 70), Enis Bardhi , Malsa, Sergio León (Dani Gómez, min. 61), Rochina (Jorge De Frutos, min. 61) and Morales (Nikola Vukcevic, min. 79) Goals0-1 min. 29: Morales. 0-2 min. 94: Jorge De Frutos. Referee Mario Melero López Yellow cards Vezo (min. 35), Daniel Cárdenas (min. 68), Lemar (min. 69), Koke (min. 69) and Róber (min. 90)
Camaleónico, this time with a defense of three centrals, Paco López's team played loose, without accusing the exchange of pieces regarding the match on Wednesday. He looked without complexes to deploy in attack and firm to put the shackles to that beautiful equipment that Simeone had designed. João Félix and Correa behind Luis Suárez as a threatening trident who found no game to back him up. If Morales threatened quickly when Rochina enabled him with a 40-meter pass that caught the rojiblanca defense in the opposite field and the Levante captain running towards Oblak. A touch of more on his way to the goal forced the shot, which was crossed by a span.
Atlético did not respond to that first call of attention, dull and slow. Without elaborating a harmful circulation with which to do harm. Nor was I finding depth. Neither with Marcos Llorente nor with Lodi, who has trouble fitting in as a lane. In the case of the Madrilenian, each game he plays occupies the right lane shows all the offensive volume that his team loses. A hard and focused shot from Luis Suárez repelled by Cárdenas was just the only time that Atlético disturbed the Granota goal in the first half.
Comfortable, with the leader under control, in half an hour Levante would do justice to their superiority. A bad clearance from Kondogbia in the front of the area fell to Morales. His shot beat Oblak after touching Giménez. The goal was the fourth consecutive game in which Atlético have to go in tow and the seventh conceding at least one goal. The defensive fragility that the rojiblancos have been dragging on in recent days was confirmed. The leader concedes errors to which he was not used to and without Suárez's punch that has given him so much difficulty prevailing in matches
In need of something more, Simeone wanted to shake his players with a tactical change after the break that the injury of Giménez prevented him from prolonging. He had advanced to Llorente and to keep him he had to put in the youth squad Ricard and Lemar to regain the defense of four. The movement generated a stampede by Atlético on Cárdenas' goal, which justified the rotation of Paco López with Aitor Fernández. First he touched a direct free with his fingertips that ended up repelling the post. The volleys continued with Llorente breaking on the right. João Félix did not reach a low center by half a finger and to another that did reach Cardenas's boot. A goal disallowed by Correa due to a previous foul by Luis Suárez and a header by Llorente who went high culminated that unsuccessful fireworks by the leader.
Fearing the tie for riding too much, Paco López got legs and verticality with De Frutos and Dani Gómez. He prepared the territory for a counter that ended up overthrowing Atlético. Before, Cárdenas had to respond to a shot from João Félix and make one of the stops of the day to a volley from Lemar, already with Simeone's team turned into the opposite field in desperation. So much so that at the last corner kick he joined Oblak. The loss of the ball in the rebound, left De Frutos with a lot of ground to cover, but with no one to hinder him to make it 0-2 with an accurate hit on the right side and shortly after passing the center of the field. Oblak's desperate race towards his goal staged a defeat that fuels the League.