Karanka opens in hostile territory and on alert

Karanka opens in hostile territory and on alert

Aitor Karanka, coach of Granada. / afp

Day 33

Atlético, with terrible experiences against the modest ones, and Granada in a borderline situation face a final of contrasts in El Metropolitano

Ignatius Tyko

After this interweekly matchday, there will still be five to go before the regularity tournament concludes, but the duel of contrasts that Atlético and Granada face this Wednesday at the Metropolitano is presented as a final. After beating Espanyol in an agonizing and controversial manner, the Madrid rojiblancos equalized in third place with Sevilla and Barça, although the Catalans still have the game postponed against Rayo pending, but they cannot fail in their fiefdom because Betis and the Real Sociedad also threaten the Champions League places. And the Nasrids, who will debut with Aitor Karanka on their bench after the dismissal of Rubén Torrecilla, began the day on the edge of the relegation zone and are eager to score points anywhere. Although on paper this is not a match of their championship due to permanence, the Andalusians are very aware that in the first round they already beat Atlético at Nuevo Los Cármenes and that Cholo Simeone's team suffers against the modest ones, to the point of having fallen into his feud against Mallorca and Levante.

Simeone, who to the well-known absences of Giménez and Herrera adds the casualties of Joao Félix and Lemar, suffering from muscle injuries, and Felipe and Kondogbia, due to suspension, this time made an exception to that unwritten rule of talking only about the match what does he play. They asked him about the 'Super Cup case' and those 24 million commissions that Gerard Piqué's company received for mediating between the Spanish Federation and Saudi Arabia, and the Argentine did not hold his tongue. He urged the body chaired by Luis Rubiales to explain "better" the contracts for the Super Cup given the evidence that he "favored him more financially" if Real Madrid and the Barça team disputed that competition.

«In the same way that we feel very proud to have competed in the way we have for these ten years, we see ourselves reflected in all the teams that fight to be close by, such as Betis, Villarreal, Valencia, Athletic, Sevilla, Real Sociedad... I think they will all be left with the feeling that we are in the same bag, "said Cholo when questioning him about the contrast between his cache and sports pulse that Atlético has maintained with him Real Madrid and Barcelona during the last years. The mattress coach came to say that the work of Piqué, the footballer and businessman, should not go together this time because "the circumstance that he plays for Barcelona" occurs.

On the Granada side, Karanka highlighted the desire he had to train in the League after his last experience at English club Birmingham and was sure of "finding the formula" for Granada to achieve permanence. He explained that "if a team with the quality of its players is in this situation, it is because something is happening", although he clarified that he has only been at the club for a few hours and still does not know what is happening to him. "My style is to play as well as possible because the better you play, the more options you have to win," said Karanka, who wants his Granada "to have an identity, compete, be organized and things turn out better or worse, everyone thinks they have given everything." Congratulated by José Mourinho himself, who was his boss during his time at the helm of Real Madrid, the man from Vitoria assumes that he is making his debut in hostile territory for all ex-professionals in the White House.

Likely lineups

  • Athletic:
    Oblak, Wass or Vrsaljko, Savic, Hermoso or Reinildo, Lodi, Llorente, De Paul, Koke, Carrasco, Griezmann and Correa or Luis Suárez.

  • Grenade:
    Maximiano, Quini, Domingos Duarte, Víctor Díaz, Escudero, Petrovic, Luis Milla, Montoro, Uzuni, Machís and Luis Suárez.

  • Referee:
    Gil Manzano (Extremeño Committee).

  • Time:
    7:00 p.m. Wanda Metropolitan.

  • TV:
    Movistar LaLiga.

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