Atlético Madrid’s Derby Day celebrations were brightened by a stunning 3-1 win against Real Madrid at the Metropolitano Stadium
Atlético Madrid jumped off to an early lead with goals from Lvaro Morata (formerly of Los Blancos) and Antoine Griezmann. Just before halftime, Madrid senior midfielder Toni Kroos scored to give the away team some hope, but Morata scored again within seconds of the restart to restore Madrid’s two-goal lead.
Jude Bellingham, the new star player for Madrid, experienced defeat for the first time since moving to Spain in the summer. No miraculous recovery was possible at this late hour. After a flawless start to the La Liga season, Madrid suffered their first loss of the year, dropping them to second place.
When Lucas Vázquez took over as the starting right back after Dani Carvajal went down with a muscular injury, the home team had a lot of success out wide. In the 18th minute, Antoine Griezmann doubled Atlético’s lead after Sal Guez crossed the field and clipped the ball to him.
As has been the norm for opponents of Diego Simeone’s squad, Real Madrid’s midfield four dominated possession, although Atlético made the most of its few opportunities.
After Los Blancos had fallen down, Kroos got them back in it with a thunderous shot from outside the penalty area that sailed past Jan Oblak.
Both goalkeepers were called into action early and often in the first half, with Kepa making a diving save on a González shot and Oblak blocking another Kroos long-range effort.
The goal by the German midfielder gave Madrid new life, and they pushed for an equalizer before halftime. They appeared to have scored in the 44th minute when Bellingham sent in a cross that Alaba met, but the Austrian’s effort rebounded off the post and fell into Eduardo Camavinga’s path, who tapped it home.
To the dismay of the Merengues, the goal was disallowed because the referee and VAR determined that Madrid defender Antonio Rüdiger had interfered with play when he was offside.
When Bellingham put Rodrygo through on the left side of Atlético’s half, the final defender, José Mara Giménez, viciously fouled the Brazilian, prompting Madrid to call for a red card just two minutes later.
The official ruled against the appeals, and Atleti took a 2-1 lead into halftime. Madrid was unhappy that they had squandered a chance to tie the game.
As Atlético started the second half even faster than the first, disappointment at halftime quickly turned into excitement. After just 32 seconds, Morata scored his second goal of the game by beating Kepa to the left side of the net after Guez sent an inch-perfect cross to his head.
The Colchoneros’ aerial threat had shaken Madrid, and they scored again from a left-wing cross. With his second goal of the game, Morata gave Diego Simeone’s team a triumph they will never forget. It was just their second derby victory in the league since the 2015–16 season.
Ancelotti was much more critical of his team’s defensive performance in the postgame interview.
“All I’ll say is that we didn’t defend well,” he said. Atlético capitalized on the team’s inability to play in a tight formation early on. The three goals were all exactly the same.
The problem was on defense, not on offense.
As a result of their efforts on Sunday, Atlético moved up to fifth position in La Liga, while Madrid dropped to third, one point behind Girona and league leader Barcelona.