In what was a really tactical and tense sport on the prime of La Liga in a battle between second positioned Atletico Madrid and third positioned Valencia, the hosts ran out 1-Zero winners after the precision of a thunderous Angel Correa strike on 59 minutes proved the winner in a reasonably uneventful conflict on the prime of the Spanish first division.
Atletico began the sport in fast vogue, forcing the tempo and pushing Valencia again early on.
The house aspect had been actually keen to keep up boss Diego Simeone’s unbeaten report towards the away aspect and continued to push Valencia again however with little finish product bringing motion from Neto.
One of the best effort from the opening 15 minutes got here from Saul Niguez within the 11th minute because the central midfielder fired a 35-yard shot excessive and huge of the Valencia objective.
Saul noticed one other likelihood to strive his luck from distance 12 minutes later, the Spanish worldwide’s shot bringing a diving save from Neto regardless of replays displaying the shot inches huge.
Atleti troubled the objective face on 27 minutes when a cross from Vrsalko introduced panic within the Valencia defence when Diego Costa tried an overhead kick, with Antoine Griezmann failing to take advantage of from the rebound.
Eight minutes later noticed Neto in motion as soon as extra as a thumping header from Costa introduced an athletic response save from the Brazilian to maintain parity.
The closest likelihood of the half for the away aspect fell eight minutes earlier than the break when a fast free-kick was handed huge to a free Jose Gaya on the left wing, the Spaniard needing two possibilities to whip in a ball that finds ahead Simone Zaza. The Italian firing a stumbling effort harmlessly huge of Jan Oblak’s objective.
The tense battle continued in comparable vein for either side after the interval. Proceedings had been slowed when Atletico centre-back Diego Godin was substituted after being punched within the face by Neto because the pair challenged for a cross – with the Uruguayan defender dropping a tooth for his troubles.
Griezmann directed a tame header in direction of Neto on 53 minutes, bringing a easy save from the keeper as Simeone’s aspect continued to have the lion’s share of possession.
With half an hour to go, Atleti discovered their all necessary breakthrough by way of a chic 22-yard pile-driver from the boot of Correa. After receiving the ball within the last third from Koke, the winger had the time to show, compose and shoot a pin-point shot thunderously previous a despairing Neto.
Correa proved troublesome on a pair extra events, essentially the most notable being one other shot in house on the fringe of the 18-yard field forcing a save from the Valencia goalkeeper.
As the sport drew to a detailed, regardless of the introduction of all three substitutes for the away aspect it didn’t generate any new risk or urgency from Marcelino’s males, with Simeone’s aspect joyful to soak up strain and try to counter.
Valencia’s efforts within the tie had been summed up with ten minutes to go when Soler blazed a shot excessive and huge with Oblak having a relaxed time in objective, that means Atletico sit as the one aspect who can actually bother Barcelona on the prime, particularly after their 1-1 draw with Espanyol earlier on Sunday.