The Rojiblancos put up a determined display against Juventus but the Atletico Madrid boss has got himself into trouble following his touchline antics.
Atletico Madrid boss Diego Simeone has been charged with improper conduct. This comes after an obscene gesture made by the Argentine during his side’s Champions League win over Juventus. Following Atletico defender Jose Gimenez’s opening goal in the 2-0 win, El Cholo turned to his team’s fans and grabbed his crotch. Speaking after the game, Simeone insisted the action was to demonstrate his side showed “balls” for the way they saw off the Serie A leaders during the first leg of their last-16 tie.
Speaking to Sky Sports Italy, the 48-year-old explained, “It means we have balls, a lot of balls. To start (Diego) Costa and Koke after they hadn’t played for a month takes balls. I did it as a player at Lazio and Bologna and I did it again to show our fans that we have ‘cojones’. It wasn’t aimed at the other team, I was turning towards our own supporters. It’s not a nice gesture, I’ll admit, but I felt the need to do it.”
However, UEFA have taken a dim view of the incident. It is expected that their disciplinary panel will judge the case at a later date. If things turn out as expected, the Argentine manager might have to face a touchline ban. The ban might come into effect on the second leg of the encounter which set to be played in Turin on Tuesday, March 12.
Allegri also in trouble?
Not only Simeone but even Max Allegri might face a charge for improper conduct. This is a result of his team being late on the field for kick-off. The Italian’s decisions came under the spotlight after his side’s defeat at Wanda Metropolitano. Allegri was given a dose of his own medicide as the side from the Sapnish capital outfoxed the wily Italian. Allegri admitted that his side were outplayed but remained unruffeled.
“We played a bad second half, making the mistake of going after them,” he said. “The approach wrong in the second half, it’s that simple. We couldn’t be any worse than in the second half, so we must have confidence for the return leg. We knew that Atletico make you play badly, and to beat them you need to stay on top. The 2-0 can be overturned, it is useless to cry on it,” he concluded.
Atletico Madrid are in control of the tie following the impressive first leg result. But if Simeone is charged with a touch-line ban, it will be a huge dent in their European aspirates. Will the Spaniards progress or will the “El Pupas” tag haunt them yet again?