Leipzig – Atlético Madrid 2–1
The final of the Football Champions League in Lisbon, Portugal, continued on Thursday night in the semi-finals between Leipzig and Atlético Madrid.
Third in the Bundesliga, the German club had to leave the match without their long-time striker Timo Werner. Werner, who hit Leipzig in 28 matches this season in the current season, moved to the Premier League in a London-based Chelsea shirt. In the quarter-finals, Leipzig had knocked down Tottenham 4-0.
Atlético Madrid also knocked out the English club in the quarter-finals, with Premier League winner Liverpool falling 4-2.
The Madrid team, led by Diego Simeone, has made a tough mark in the Champions League for several seasons with their great defensive play, although in the Spanish league the team is often overshadowed by Real Madrid and Barcelona.
No goals were seen in the first half of Thursday’s semi-final match, and when Atlético played, a low-goal match was expected.
At the beginning of the second half, however, Leipzig managed to break Atlético's defense with a fine lineup. The ball was played fast with a pass to the side, Austrian Marcel Sabitzer centered the mill on the head of the Spanish striker Dani Olmo, and this nicked the Germans into the lead.
The Leipzig players spent the break getting a rerun of the team's tactical organization and regained a solid organization when the game started again.
Photo: Miguel A. Lopes / Pool / Reuters
After a loss, Atlético replaced the most expensive acquisition in his club history, 20-year-old Portuguese Joao Félix. There were twenty minutes left in the game when Felix scored a penalty. He embedded it in the net himself.
For a long time it seemed that we would go to a follow-up match in the readings 1–1.
Joao Felix brought the Madrid players to the levels after first taking the penalty kick himself.
Photo: Lluis Gene / Pool / Reuters
However, the match got a dramatic end-to-end solution like Wednesday’s game. On Wednesday, Parisian club PSG had risen from a loss to a 2-1 win against Atalanta in the last five minutes.
Tyler Adams, a midfielder from the United States, became Leipzig's hero in the 88th minute of the match. A long-range shot took the lucky bounce from the legs of Atlético topper Stefan Savic, bouncing over the goal over Slovenian goalkeeper Jan Oblak.
With Leipzig's surprise victory, the first pair of semi-finals is clear: the Paris Power Club PSG will face Leipzig next Tuesday.
Two players at Atlético Madrid, defender Sime Vrsjalko and striker Angel Correa, had been diagnosed with a coronavirus last weekend. However, the team was able to play in the semi-finals against Leipzig when no other virus was found in the retests.
The semi-finals continue on Friday and Saturday. The semi-finals will be played on Tuesday and Wednesday next week. The final is scheduled for Sunday, August 23rd.
Champions League semi-finals:
Wednesday 12.8. Atalanta - PSG (PSG continued reading 1-2)
Thursday 13.8. RB Leipzig - Atlético Madrid (Leipzig to continue reading 2-1)
Friday 14.8. FC Barcelona - Bayern Munich
Saturday 15.8. Man City - Lyon