Atletico Madrid suffered a dramatic 3-2 defeat at relegation-threatened Cadiz in LaLiga on Saturday, three days after Diego Simeone’s side were knocked out of the Champions League in the group stage.
Ruben Sobrino scored the winner for Cadiz in the final minute as Atletico suffered their third league defeat of the season to remain third on 23 points after 12 games, eight points behind leaders Real Madrid who have a game in hand.
“It’s hard to explain everything that happened in just a few minutes,” Diego Simeone said postmatch. “It was difficult at the start, after the blow the other day it was another blow. After that we played a good first half, we had chances, we didn’t take them.
“In the second half we went further behind at 2-0. Then the changes were important, Pablo Barrios coming on for his debut, Joao came on and played like we need him to play, Griezmann came on and gave us more calm in attack. We got into the game at 2-1, then the great goal from Joao for 2-2. We’re in a moment when things aren’t going our way. Joao had the header to make it 3-2 to us, and in the last move of the game they made it 3-2. Just like in moments of joy when things are going well, now that things aren’t going our way, we’re just as strong.”
Theo Bongonda put Cadiz ahead in the first minute and Alex Fernandez made it 2-0 in the 81st. Defender Luis Hernandez scored an own goal four minutes later before substitute Joao Felix made it 2-2 in the 89th minute.
Atletico, who bowed out of Europe’s top-tier competition after a draw with Bayer Leverkusen, were shocked when Bongonda found the bottom corner in the opening minute with a left-footed shot from the box.
With Felix and Antoine Griezmann on the bench, Atletico’s attack was led by Alvaro Morata and Angel Correa but Morata had to go off with an injury in the 10th minute, dealing a blow to the visitors who brought on Matheus Cunha.
Atletico looked better in the second half when Simeone brought on Felix and Antoine Griezmann, but Cadiz went 2-0 up when Hernandez finished off a team move in the 81st minute.
The home side’s joy, though, was short-lived as Hernandez sent Felix’s overhead kick into his own net before Felix fired a shot from outside the box to make it 2-2.
Sobrino rescued Cadiz at death, firing a left-footed shot from close range as the home side moved up one spot to 18th on 10 points.
“These things happen in football,” Rodrigo De Paul said. “These two games hurt. Today we tried, and in the end things aren’t going our way but we have to carry on.
“We’ve often won in added time too. Unfortunately these things have happened, we’ve been punished, we have to keep going. It’s not just about if the ball goes in or not, it’s a lot of things, but we have to keep working.”