Champions League: Atlético de Madrid wins, but leaves Dortmund alive

The 'colchoneros' were able to secure a win, but they needed the full time of the game to achieve their goal.

There are games that are inexplicable from the start. This time, it was between Atlético de Madrid and Borussia Dortmund in the first leg of the Champions League quarterfinals, which ended 2-1 in favor of Atlético de Madrid.

If one sees the data, perhaps the result is even more logical. But the reality of the game means that it could have ended in a loss for Madrid, who were met with resistance by Dortmund as they left any form of apathy of the first half in the locker room during halftime.

The Griezmann show

But it is not worth advancing the facts so much because beyond how the game ended, how it began is just as important.

Antonio Griezmann, Madrid's star, recorded his umpteenth performance of the season, leading in the creative and gestation area. Morata's first opportunities were born from his feet, and from his soccer skills, Atlético subdued a harmless, apathetic and outmatched Dortmund.

Within two minutes of the game, Antonio received a pass from Lino, launching a counterattack. As if he had a radar on his left foot, he launched the ball toward Morata with a first-time pass that planted the Spaniard in front of goalkeeper Kobel. Unfortunately for Madrid, their striker took their time to settle in and finish, ultimately being blocked by the defense.

However, the play was a preamble to what was to come.

Just two minutes later, Rodrigo de Paul put 'Atleti' ahead in a play that was born from a grotesque error at the start of Dortmund.

De Paul recovered and controlled a ball that he defined as "a slap," making a goal that requires a lot of skill look easy.

In addition to the goal, Rodrigo was undoubtedly Griezmann's second sword. The Argentine, whose technique was as privileged as it was underrated, was the midfielder who most accompanied and associated with the Frenchman, also looking like the spiritual leader of a team that moves to the rhythm of the Albiceleste world champion.

Atlético continued with the momentum. Koke pulled the strings in the middle, Molina and Lino pressed and unbalanced from the sides, and Griezmann, together with de Paul, became undetectable.

Atlético's second goal, however, did not arise from the team's good partnerships but from another gross error from the opponent. Dortmund's last line became complicated again, leaving the ball served to Griezmann, who, with a subtle and delicate touch, enabled a Lino to beat Kobel with aesthetics and certainty.

The 2-0 score seemed to put Atlético on track for a tie, but Dortmund had something else to say.

The Brandt and Haller revolution

Before halftime, Dortmund began to show signs of life through the irreverence of Jadon Sancho, the only player from the German team who tried to shake off the 'colchonero' dominance.

But in the second half, the story was a bit different. First, Julian Brandt entered at the start, perhaps the most creative midfielder of the Germans. Second, Atleti began to miss goals and hesitate in the defense.

At the hour mark, Sebastián Haller entered the game and became the piece that finally gave life to Dortmund.

At the 81-minute mark, in a completely broken game, Haller took advantage of a rebound from a play started by Brandt and immediately made it 2-1. From there, development was a toss-up.

Atleti had had an opportunity with Riquelme and Correa, both introduced from the bench, the 3-1, but Dortmund had two shots that hit the woodwork.

At 86 minutes, an infernal left foot shot by Englishman Bynoe-Gittens almost sneaked past Jan Oblak's humanity. In the last play of the game, Brandt almost consecrated his excellent entry with a header that touched wood, paralyzing the entire Metropolitano.

In the end, Atleti won, but they left the Germans alive, who will now try to come back against their people next Tuesday in a tie that is far from being closed.