Diego Simeone says Atletico could have dealt with Elanga's goal better
Diego Simeone has given his verdict on Manchester United’s draw with his Atletico Madrid side.
Anthony Elanga scored with United’s one and only chance to secure a smash and grab draw for the visitors.
Simeone was asked to analyse United’s goal in his press conference and told Marca he felt his side should have defended it better.
He said: “Good play when the ball came out, Bruno makes a pass change and enables the run for a quick transition and they took advantage of the only mismatch we had. Reinildo could have solved it better, but we knew that in some transition it could happen.”
Fernandes’ pass was incisive and so was Elanga’s finish, with neither defender Reinaldo or goalkeeper Oblak able to cut United’s attack out.
Simeone believes the tie is completely open for the second leg at Old Trafford. He said: “Almost everything we did in the game was very good, it would seem that they have the advantage for drawing but nothing changes”.
He was backed by centre-back defender Jose Gimenez, who told Marca: “They responded to a mismatch of ours with surgical precision. We hope to continue on this path.”
Both sides will be confident heading into the second leg in March, and know more about the opponent after this testing first leg.
United hope home advantage will be key, and away goals won’t be a factor with UEFA scrapping the rule this season.
United held 63 per cent of possession but only managed seven shots, with just two on target.
Atletico were more wasteful, attempting 13 shots at goal with only one on target.