Costa cleared for finale

2014-05-16 15:26
Diego Costa (AFP)

Madrid - Atletico Madrid coach Diego Simeone has said Diego Costa will definitely start his side's La Liga title decider away to Barcelona on Saturday after overcoming a hamstring injury.

Costa missed Atletico's 1-1 draw with Malaga last weekend due the problem as Los Rojiblancos passed up the opportunity to seal their first title in 18 years.

However, the Spanish international, who has scored 36 goals in all competitions this season, returned to full training on Friday and Simeone insists he will be fit for the visit to the Camp Nou.

"He is fine. Today he ended the training session again without any problems. Tomorrow he will play from the start," Simeone said at his pre-match press conference on Friday.

Atletico know that just a point will be enough to seal their 10th La Liga championship and haven't lost in five meetings against Barcelona in three different competitions this season.

However, Simeone admitted he never believed Atletico would come this close to upsetting Barca and Real Madrid's domination in Spain by potentially becoming the first side in 10 years outside of the top two to win the league.

"I never imagined a situation where at one point we were seven points ahead of Madrid and six in front of Barca, albeit they had games in hand.

"Even then, though, Barca never gave up and that is a very important value for them.

"We have two rivals who always compete to be where we are. Normally they win all the time but this year it hasn't been like that."

In what could be the most important week in Atletico's history, Simeone's men will then face Real Madrid in the Champions League final the following Saturday on May 24.

However, the Argentine is confident his players will not be distracted by the possibility of winning European football's premier club competition for the first time ever.

"We are in a moment where no one is thinking about what is coming next week. Given the respect we have for the league that is our sole focus.

"It seems strange to say it, but it is a league final."


Dolly stars in 'Downs win

2015-10-03 22:59


Read News24’s Comments Policy publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.
Live Video Streaming
  • Blitz
    Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @00:00
  • SS1
    Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @01:00
  • SS2
    Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @02:00
  • SS3
    Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @03:00
Video Highlights
Sport Talk
Most Read


Rugby World Cup 2015

All the action from the 2015 RWC, including live coverage of all 48 matches, breaking news, fixtures, results, logs - and much more!


Rugby World Cup 2015

Lood leads heavy Bok assault
Hosts England crash out of RWC
Cotter takes loss on the chin
'Basic' Bok plan worked well
Love 2 Meet
English Premiership flutter

Take Sport24's "expert" tips at your peril...


Take a photographical trip down memory lane and remind yourself of how the Springboks fared in their five previous Rugby World Cup campaigns. In addition, pick your all-time Springbok Rugby World Cup Dream Team and you could win R3 000!

Latest blogs

Who was the best summer signing in the EPL?

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

iPhone Latest Sport24 news on your iPhone

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.