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The Metropolitan breathed when the agony ceased.

When, this time, he celebrated his first victory in a derby.

It doesn't matter what plot is behind it.

It will remain that Carrasco's penalty goal finally uncorked that bottle that resisted.

He put effort and desire for it.

He forgave and was forgiven.

But he won, which is what counts, and the ticket to the Champions League is already a stone's throw away.

The staging is always important.

It is not the same to enter an appointment clueless and without interest, as Atlético did last night, in a vital derby for his health.

That Real Madrid landed in the Metropolitano relaxed and crowned, with their heads set on the Champions League final in Paris and a handful of unusual players in their lineup, such as Vallejo or Jovic, still increased the risk of the red and white bet.

The sun had not yet set in Madrid, when Atlético showed their intentions.

With Llorente released from the chains of the right wing.

With the vertiginous Cunha become the reference.

With Correa, lacking precision, Carrasco and Koke biting the trembling defense of the champion.

That start with determination and courage, which was missed so many times during the season, propelled an Atletico team determined not to prolong the agony towards the next Champions League.

Determined, too, not to repeat mistakes not so far away, as on the last night in San Mamés that led to tragedy.

The locals did not take five minutes to send the first warning about Lunin's goal, who was exploring the League for the first time with Real Madrid.

Kondogbia, in that gourmet format that he has uncorked several times this season, pounced on Kroos and found Correa in the same place where a year ago he secured the title for Atlético.

He shot cross.

Behind him, Carrasco appeared, at a gallop, fresh and without complexes, to appear as many times as he wanted through the rival area.

The white defense moved between inaccuracies.

And the Belgian, face to face with Lucas Vázquez, appeared a couple of times before half an hour.

He lacked punch, just like his team.

Until that moment, despite the athletic superiority, neither of the two goalkeepers had had to intervene.

But the derby opened wide before the break.

The VAR did it, which, this time, fell on the side of the face for the rojiblancos.

Cunha, full of power and speed, started down the center aisle after a shipment from Llorente and ended up sandwiched between Vallejo and Militao.

Soto Grado passed by, but the screen revealed that the young central defender had pushed the Brazilian.

Carrasco, who now no longer blinks when it comes to taking responsibility, deceived Lunin.

The Metropolitan exploded with enthusiasm.

But we must not lose respect for Madrid for a second.

Although it seems that it is impossible that something can happen, with the break just around the corner.

Atlético missed it for a moment, but Oblak appeared dazzling, with his usual cape, to save that momentary victory.

That momentary victory that meant a lot of loot, also emotional, in that corner of the capital.

Atlético woke up in the second act without Correa, smudged at the start, and with Griezmann.

And Real Madrid woke up with a different attitude, with other intentions.

After all, a derby is always a derby.

That's why the night was gaining in frenzy.

Jovic appeared again near Oblak, but ended up disarmed by Savic.

Carrasco looked at the sky wondering how the hell he had gotten around that goal that he longed to cross.

Casemiro dusted off his smile after a harmless shot, in a lethal counter.

And Cunha pulled hard on his pants after pardoning Real Madrid's sentence.

Griezmann had gone up a gear in the attack.

And Ancelotti, who was not convinced by the result, despite the fact that he did not have much to gain, ended up pulling most of the first swords that he kept on the bench as a precaution.

Vinicius, Valverde, Modric and Mendy entered one by one.

Only Benzema was missing.

Both Carrasco and Griezmann had the white epitaph drawn, but the pen ran out of ink before the jaws of Madrid.

And that does not usually bode well, when the neighbor is ahead.

But Atlético maintained their bet, firm and convinced.

Also grabbed Oblak, who saved a necessary victory, almost forced, to pave his way to Europe.

It was the story of the first victory in a derby for the eyes of the Metropolitan.

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  • Articles Carlos Guisasola

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