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First-half performance against Bayern is what Atletico Madrid strive for says Simeone

Atletico Madrid produced a near-perfect opening 45 minutes of play in Wednesday night's Champions League semi-final against Bayern Munich.

Los Rojiblancos manager Diego Simeone was delighted with the way his side moved the ball and controlled proceedings in the first half of their 1-0 first leg triumph at the Vicente Calderon.

Simeone admits that Pep Guardiola's Bayern side were by far the better of the two teams during the second half but feels that if his players can recreate what they produced early, then next week's second leg might be at the mercy of the Spanish club.

"The first half was very close to what we wanted," he said.

"We got in front, felt comfortable. In the second half, they were better, had lots of possession, and they got in behind us.

"We defended well, but it was a different game in the second half. We had a key chance in the second half but I think the first half was closer to what we wanted."

Saul Niguez scored the only goal of the contest with a dazzling run in the 11th minute where he saw off a trio of would-be tacklers before superbly stroking home beyond Manuel Neuer with his left foot.

Andrew Slevison
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Andrew Slevison

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