Pre-match Atletico Madrid quotes on Chelsea clash: ‘It’s an even game’

Atletico Madrid stars talk to the media ahead of their Champions League semi-final clash against Chelsea.

Jose Mourinho’s Chelsea side stand in the way of Atletico Madrid making their first appearance in the Champions League final since 1974.

It promises to be an intriguing battle between two evenly-matched teams with similar footballing philosophies who boast traits of hard work, mental toughness and tactical discipline.

On the eve of the much-anticipated clash against the Blues, Atletico Madrid stars and staff spoke to Spanish newspaper AS and acknowledged the challenge that awaits them.

Diego Simeone – manager:

“We’re not the same, but there are similarities. Chelsea have one of the meanest defences in England, and that’s our case in Spain. We work well defensively, we're direct, good on set pieces... Those similarities are what have led us to where we are now: one fighting for the league in England and us being where we are in our league.”

Raul Garcia – midfielder:

“It will be a very even game against a rival that has a clear idea of what it brings.”

“To focus on just one player would be very complicated. Chelsea are a hardworking team which defends very well.”

“We are a team which fight, we are not afraid. But we always respect our opponents.”

Koke – midfielder:

“The fans know the importance of the game. Against Barcelona and Milan they supported us. We will give our all for them and they will support us like they always do.”

“Even though I have played in a lot of finals, tomorrow could be the biggest game of my life.”

Thibaut Courtois – goalkeeper and Chelsea loanee:

“I am relieved that we face Chelsea, just like we did in the European Super Cup. It’s special for me because I’m at Atleti, but Chelsea are also my team.”

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