Result: Atlético Madrid 1-0 Valencia
Date: 04 February 2018
Venue: Wanda Metropolitano
Atlético Madrid saw off Valencia 1-0 at the Wanda Metropolitano in Sunday’s late LaLiga clash, breathing a certain degree of life into the title race.
The hosts looked the better of the two sides in what was a quiet opening phase of the game. Neto made a good save from Saul Niguez’s 23rd minute long-range shot, but the ball was drifting wide of the post in any case.
In the 35th minute, Neto made another fine stop — this time a vital one to deny Diego Costa’s header from a Koke corner.
However, the keeper could do nothing to keep out a vicious strike from Angel Correa in the 59th minute. Correa let fly from just outside the box, rifling the ball past Neto at his near post and into the top corner to break the deadlock.
Atlético put the ball in the net again within a matter of minutes, but this time, the goal was ruled out due to a foul from José Giménez on Neto.
Gabi was fortunate not to receive a second yellow card for pulling back Geoffrey Kondogbia in the 82nd minute. Had he been sent off, a toothless Valencia might have been provided with inspiration.
That aside, Los Che can have no excuse after being outplayed from the first whistle. Atlético’s lead rarely looked under threat and the victory has moved them within nine points of league leaders Barcelona.