First Division - Day 20

Atlético Madrid 2 - Sevilla 1

Atlético: Juanma; Gaspar, García Calvo, Simeone, Sergi; Aguilera (Santi 80'), De los Santos, Ibagaza (Musampa 91'), Nano (Jorge 69'); Nikolaidis, Fernando Torres. 4-4-2.
Sevilla: Esteban; Daniel Alves, Alfaro, Javi Navarro, David; Torrado, Martí; Redondo (Carlos 85'), Antoñito, Reyes; Darío Silva (Hornos 73'). 4-2-3-1.

Team changes: Atlético: Simeone for Lequi / Sevilla: Torrado, Antoñito, Darío Silva for Casquero, Baptista, Hornos.

1-0. 42. Fernando Torres. Got on the end of Aguilera's cross to fire into roof of net.
2-0. 71. Nikolaidis. Got above defence to head Ibagaza free kick past Esteban.
2-1. 77. Reyes (penalty). After García Calva ruled to have pushed Martí in area.

Atlético Madrid kept up their challenge on the Champions League spots, and they consolidated fourth place after a 2-1 win over Sevilla. Manzano's side made it eight games without defeat with goals from their twin strikers Fernando Torres and Nikolaidis, Torres opening the scoring just before the break after Ibagaza and Aguilera combined to lay the ball on for him. Earlier in the half Antoñito should have scored for the locals had he not chosen to head the ball rather than kick it, and Nikolaidis tested Esteban with a header.

Atlético started the second half strongly, but were unable to take their chances until twenty minutes from the end, when Nikolaidis got ahead of Esteban to head home Ibagaza's free kick. It appeared to be all over, but referee Iturralde González awarded a questionable penalty after a foul by García Calvo on Martí, and Reyes stepped up to beat Juanma with a twice taken kick. That set up a nervous last few minutes for the visitors, and substitute Carlos missed a golden opportunity to save a point for the Andalucians right at the end. The two sides meet again in the cup midweek.