Atletico Madrid had Antoine Griezmann and Luis Suarez to thank after they both scored late goals against AC Milan. The Rossoneri have been in red-hot form since the turn of the year. They were playing their first UCL tie at the San Siro since 2014
The Game week two of 2021/2022 UEFA Champions League promised intrigues and fireworks. This one delivered the magic.
The home team, lining up in a 4-2-3-1 scored early as Rafael Leao slotted in from a perfect angle. It was his third goal of the season and it put AC Milan in front. The in-form Brahim Diaz supplied the assist.
However, things went sour as Franck Kessie received his second yellow of the night in the 29th minute for an offense on Marcos Llorente. Milan were on the back foot as they had to take out their striker Ante Rebic. They replaced him with the initially rested Sandro Tonali to balance the midfield. Leao fired a spectacular overhead kick that crashed off the bar. What a goal that would have been.
Atletico Madrid upped their attacking intensity in the second half with no end product to show for it. Diego Simeone made some attacking changes after the hour mark to add vigor to the attack.
It eventually paid off as Antoine Griezmann hammered in a wonderful strike to level the scores in the 87th minute. It was his first goal since returning to the club in the summer. It came as a huge relief to the coaching staff as they could be seen jumping around in celebration.
After the initial 4 minutes of added time, the game was stopped for a penalty check against AC Milan. The penalty was awarded. Luis Suarez stepped up to convert the spot-kick, securing all three points for the visitors in a very intense battle. It was Suarez’s first away goal in the UEFA Champions League in six years. More viewings showed that Thomas Lemar had handled the ball first. The penalty was a farce (Stefano Pioli was livid in his post-match interview) but it didn’t matter. AC Milan 1-2 Atletico Madrid it ended.
Atletico Madrid’s chances of qualifying for the next round are high. They sit second on the log with 4 points and they face log leaders Liverpool in game week 3. AC Milan sits bottom with zero points and they face FC Porto in a must-win match if they are to make it to the Europa League knockout stages. Milan may have lost both their games but their performances have not been as dire as their UCL position suggests.