The fans behind the bench that occupied the Athletic In the Benito Villamarín stadium they were stunned by the viscerality with which Diego Pablo Simeone interacts with his players and makes decisions. "It's all right, right? Put Vitolo to warm up! " Just 20 minutes had elapsed when the rojiblanco coach, angry, ordered his assistant Germán Burgos to send the Canarian midfielder to warm up the repeated turnovers of Thomas Lemar.
Without Koke and without Saul injured, Lemar was part of an initial plan that also included Correa, Griezmann and the newly landed Morata. An alignment with a marked offensive character that ended up reinforced in the final stretch of the meeting by the aforementioned Vitolo, who finally replaced Lemar after the hour of play and by Kalinic. All that arsenal arranged throughout the match only gave Atlético to record two shots on goal, one at each time. The first was a calm shot of Morata at the hands of Pau and the second the thread of Griezmann that crashed in the post, and with 1-0 in favor of Betis. A paltry baggage with so much artillery deployed. A battery of forwards and offensive players who did not find how to do damage.
Morata met at the Villamarín firsthandor that they have already suffered before other new ones that preceded him (Mandzukic, Jackson Martinez, Raul Jimenez, Vietto, Torres, Gameiro, even Costa in this second stage). They found him very little. Neither with passes filtered into space, nor with lateral centers in which to impose its size. A shot and the play of the indicated penalty were his only important actions.
When a team with an aspiring fang was expected to face the chance it had to stand three points behind Barcelona, a flat set emerged in attack, with an excess of control in its offense during the first half. In that section, neither Arias nor Juanfran, changed bands, were projected in attack. Nor did Correa come into play. The initial slogan was to load the game on the left, where Lemar was wrecked as an unbalancing player.
The performance of the most expensive signing in the history of the club was very symptomatic. Football players like him have to make good the saying that matches are won in the opponent's field and not lost in their own. During many phases of the match, supported by a good execution of the forward pressure, Atlético transmitted a sense of dominance. He had sections in which even the possession was his, but he hardly found imbalance in the last meters. Lemar, which is the bet of the project to mark differences in that area, is already aspiring to that list of talented players (Óliver, Gaitán, Carrasco and Vitolo) that have not exploited under the direction of Simeone.
Juanfran diagnosed that problem at the end of the game: "We have lacked depth to have chances. Because you can press Betis, but if in the end you do not make chances, no matter how hard you press, you will not hurt. When the top people receive is when they have to face, be more aggressive in the face of goal. We were doing it these past weeks. "
Juanfran radiographed the offensive clogging of a team that before the decisive derby next Saturday and the tie with Juventus does not just stabilize a more reliable, resounding and winning version. The attack is still heavily dependent on Griezmann both to finish and to generate chances. A gray day of French, as it was on Saturday, is a generalized cloudy in the attack. A major problem for a team that aims to aspire to LaLiga and eliminate the Italian champion.