International

Alteti optimistic of Barca win

2015-01-26 15:34
Diego Simeone (Supplied)

Madrid - Atletico Madrid have lost to in-form Barcelona twice in the past two weeks. Nonetheless, they are hopeful of reversing a 1-0 deficit in the Spanish cup quarter-finals on Wednesday.

Atletico Madrid are optimistic about eliminating Barcelona from the Spanish cup on Wednesday, despite having lost twice against the in-form Catalans in the past two weeks.

Atletico crashed 3-1 at the Camp Nou in La Liga a fortnight ago, a result which has consigned them to third place. And they went down again in Barcelona last Wednesday, 1-0 in a one-sided cup quarter-final first leg.

Nevertheless, veteran midfielder Tiago - fit again after two matches out injured - is optimistic about the second leg.

"We will be strong on Wednesday. Barca are flying high at the moment, getting better with every game. But we are not afraid of them.

"This is a great opportunity for us to show that we are still a team to be reckoned with...We are looking forward to it."

Tiago then paid tribute to French youngster Antoine Griezmann, who is in exceptional form and scored twice in Saturday's 3-1 defeat of Rayo Vallecano.

"We are very pleased with Griezmann. He is very quick and has a lot of quality...He has adapted very well to the team and it is clear that he is enjoying himself on the pitch.

"He is going to be a very important player for us, I have no doubts about that."

Barca have won their last six matches, and Neymar is confident that their good run will continue.

"Our attitude has changed," the Brazilian idol said.

"It is difficult for us to lose with this attitude and this style of play...Atletico are a strong team in front of their own fans, and will make things very difficult for us."

Luis Suarez is likely to start alongside Neymar and Lionel Messi, after being benched for Saturday's 6-0 romp at Elche.

Meanwhile, Marc-Andre ter Stegen will be in goal for Barca, as usual in the cup, while fellow youngster Jan Oblak will be in goal for Atletico.

Read more on:    atletico madrid  |  barcelona  |  la liga  |  soccer
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