Atletico Maintain Title Hunt With Narrow Win
Result: Atletico Madrid 1-0 Leganes
Date: 09 March 2019
Venue: Wanda Metropolitano Stadium
Atletico Madrid needed a second half penalty from Saul for a hard-fought 1-0 win over Leganes to go six points behind league leaders FC Barcelona.
Atletico hit the front gear early on, with Antoine Griezmann going close with a shot from a fast-paced attack on seven minutes.
A nicely worked build-up move found Nikola Kalinic’s header at the end of the delivery, but Andriy Lunin handled comfortably on 13 minutes.
The pressuring act from the home side continued, with Thomas Partey firing blanks right from outside the box on 18 minutes.
With an intense opening half, Rodrigo Hernandez found space at the back post and got on the end of a header from Griezmann’s free-kick but failed to beat Lunin to bring the half to a halt.
There was a double substitution for Atletico at the resumption, as Andres Solano and Thomas Lemar replaced Saul and Griezmann respectively.
Atleti found a chance to go in front when Kenneth Omeruo’s outstretched leg brought down Angel Correa on 50 minutes, with Saul firing off the rebound after seeing the initial effort saved.
A well-struck free-kick by Lemar ballooned against the crossbar on 61 minutes, as Atleti closed in on a second.
Unable to battle with Atleti’s relentless pressing, Leganes threw on their first substitution with Nabil El Zhar filling Martin Braithwaite’s spot on 71 minutes.
Leganes began to throw loads of the ball forward towards fulltime, but Atletico’s experience at seeing out matches of this nature came to the fore to bag the three points.