• Spain's news in English

Atlético looking for long-awaited Madrid derby win

AFP/The Local · 26 Apr 2013, 14:49

Published: 26 Apr 2013 14:49 GMT+02:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Atletico Madrid captain Gabi believes his side have a great opportunity to end their hoodoo against neighbours Real Madrid when they host the Spanish champions this weekend.

"There are 14 years worth of desperation to win this game," he told a press conference on Thursday.

"Obviously it is an opportunity for us. It has been a long time since we arrived at a derby so evenly matched and a long time since we beat them.

"We have spent a long time talking about the best way to win a derby and now we have to go and do it."

Real will arrive at the Calderon on the back of a devastating 4-1 defeat to Dortmund on Wednesday night and Gabi is hoping that result means Jose Mourinho will reserve the likes of Cristiano Ronaldo and Mesut Ozil for the second-leg.

"We expect that Madrid will come here to win the game, regardless of which players play. The result yesterday was one no one expected, not them, nor the people who watched it from the outside, but they know how to get over this.

"It is obvious that at the end of the season those special players like Cristiano or Ozil are the ones that win you most points. If Mourinho doesn't think they should play then it is better for us."

Atletico were also handed a huge boost with the news that Diego Costa's yellow card against Sevilla last weekend has been rescinded so the Brazilian will be available to continue up front alongside Radamel Falcao.

For Real, meanwhile, the focus remains trying to somehow overcome their 4-1 deficit against Dortmund, but captain Iker Casillas said no matter what happens on Saturday he doesn't think it will influence how next month's Copa del Rey final between the two will go.

"The calender has been capricious and certainly it is difficult for us to think that before Tuesday we have a match. And on top of that it is against Atletico at the Calderon.

"It has been 14 years since they beat us and I suppose for them it is an important match, but I don't think it will make a big difference to what happens in the cup final."

An Atletico win would also ensure Barcelona are officially crowned champions on Saturday night should they manage to win away to Athletic Bilbao.

Barca suffered their own disappointment with a 4-0 thrashing at the hands of Bayern Munich in midweek which all but ended their chances of reaching the Champions League final.

However, manager Tito Vilanova is also likely to make a number of changes ahead of Bayern's visit to the Camp Nou on Wednesday with the likes of Thiago Alcantara, Cesc Fabregas and Cristian Tello coming into the side. 

Story continues below…

On Sunday night meanwhile the focus turns to the race for the final Champions League spot as Real Sociedad host Valencia.

La Real currently hold a two-point advantage over Valencia with just six games remaining, but will be without influential winger Antoine Griezmann as he is suspended.

And it is another crucial weekend in the battle to avoid relegation withthe bottom five sides all separated by just three points.

   Defeat to Celta Vigo on Monday dropped Real Zaragoza to the foot of the
table and they host fellow-strugglers Mallorca in a crucial clash for both
sides on Saturday night.

AFP/The Local (news@thelocal.es)

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
Spain jobless drops below 20% for first time in six years
The unemployed queuing up outside a Madrid job centre. Photo: AFP

Spain's unemployment fell below 20 percent for the first time in six years, official figures showed on Thursday.

'Saints not ghouls' insists Spanish church for Halloween
Suggested outfits from the Bishopric of Cadiz and Ceuta. Photo: Shower of Roses

Spanish bishops are urging good Christian children to forgo zombie, ghost and devil outfits and instead dress up as "saints, virgins and apostles".

Tough road ahead, Spain PM warns before return to power
Rajoy will try and form a government this week. Photo: AFP

Spain's acting Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy warned on Wednesday of a tough road ahead as he prepares to take power again at the head of a minority government with little support.

Russia withdraws request to refuel warships in Ceuta
The aircraft carrier Admiral Kuznetsov was due to dock in Ceuta

Russia has withdrawn a request for its aircraft carrier group to be refuelled at the Spanish port of Ceuta, authorities confirmed.

Bulls replace guard dogs at scrap yard in Valencia
Two bulls will be patrolling the scrap yard in eastern Spain. Archive photo: AFP

Guard dogs were not proving enough of a deterrent to thieves at a car breakers yard in eastern Spain so the owner has brought in a pair of fighting bulls.

Two-headed shark born in Spanish laboratory
Scientists are studying the rare find. Photo: IBIMA / University of Malaga

Scientists at the University of Malaga found the embryo of a shark with two heads and just one body.

Spain under pressure to stop refuel of Russian warships
Russian aircraft carrier Admiral Kuznetsov is due to arrive in Ceuta. Photo: Mil Ru / Wikimedia

Spain is facing international pressure to refuse permission for a Russian warship flotilla to refuel in Ceuta en route to continuing airstrikes against the Syrian city of Aleppo.

Most wanted: Fugitive rapist arrested in Tenerife
Mohammed Jahangir Alam was arrested n Tenerife. Photo: Crimestoppers.

Mohammed Jahangir Alam, one of Britain's most wanted fugitives, who fled the country in 2008 after allegedly raping a woman, was found working in Tenerife.

Spain's Rajoy says king has tasked him with forming govt
Photo: AFP

Spain's king on Tuesday tasked Mariano Rajoy with forming a government, taking the acting conservative prime minister a step closer to power again after a 10-month political deadlock.

Two imams arrested in Ibiza resort over 'Isis support'
The men were arrested in the resort of Sant Antoni de Portmany. Photo: Jose A / Flickr

Two Moroccan imams at a mosque on the Spanish resort island of Ibiza were arrested Tuesday on suspicion of backing the Islamic State group and inciting jihad.

Analysis & Opinion
Out of the dark: Five years on from Eta ceasefire
Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
Spanish 'La Mafia' restaurants banned after Italian complaint
Spain's top court overturns bullfighting ban in Catalonia
Hunt launched for ten most wanted Brit fugitives hiding out in Spain
Napflix: Spaniards launch very boring TV channel for siestas
Madrid parish church faces fine over 'too noisy' bells
Celebrate expat life at Madrid’s THRIVE convention
Fury after kids told to bring their own loo roll to school
Disney announces plans for Don Quixote action movie
Activist tells 8-yr-old matador wannabe with cancer 'just die'
King to make last minute push to avoid third vote in Spain
Amazing photos of Catalonia's 'human tower' contest
What's on in Spain: October 2016
'No way, Jose! You'll never get your hands on our Rock'
Recipe: How to make a classic Spanish tortilla de patatas
Chorizo in paella? Go back to cooking school Jamie Oliver
Spain in eye of a perfect storm after 10 months without govt
Thousands share clips of life for 'Spain in a Day' film
Ten incredible Spain locations for Game of Thrones season 7
Analysis & Opinion
Why moving to Spain could be the best decision of your life
Seven reasons why autumn is the very best season in Spain
Spanish study finds four types of personality. Which are you?
New search underway for civil war grave of poet Lorca
jobs available