Atletico Madrid Blanks MLS All-Star Team In Friendly 3-0 Match
The new-and-improved Atletico Madrid squad had a statement win on Wednesday night when they dispatched the MLS All-Star team 3-0 at a drenched Exploria Stadium.
The game was a goalless bout until the 43rd minute when Rodrigo Riquelme broke the deadlock for Atletico. The next goal would not come until 42 minutes later in the 85th minute when fast-rising Portuguese wunderkind Joao Felix doubled Madrid’s lead to 2-0, putting any doubt of the game’s outcome to rest.
Felix did not stop there though. The Portuguese international delivered a lovely ball in extra-time to Diego Costa who put a stamp on the match for Atletico Madrid.
Joao Felix with an exquisite assist to Diego Costa yesterday against MLS All-Stars.
Pre-season has been going very well for Atletico Madrid 🔥👏 pic.twitter.com/hNgICZfV2G
— Football HQ (@FootbaII_HQ) August 1, 2019
After the game, Atletico Madrid boss Diego Simeone had nothing but praise for the effort and ability displayed by the MLS team.
“In the second half, we saw a dynamic MLS team that could have hurt us,” he said. “The league is growing each day. There’s an investment in players first, and then in coaches. The league will continue to grow.”
Orlando City and MLS All-Stars coach James O’Connor had similar praise for both Atletico Madrid and his own team’s performance during the match.
“[The All-Star Game is] a chance for some of the young players to test themselves against some of the best players in the world,” he said. “I think for the like of Mark-Anthony, Mark-Anthony’s playing against Joao Felix, who’s [€126 million] … and he did a great job, playing out of position.”
“There’s a lot of really good young talent in MLS now, and I think it’s very exciting. It’s probably the most exciting time for the league when you look at the young players that are actually in the league and the quality of the young players. There’s a load of optimism that’s around the league, and it’s a very exciting time for everyone.”
Joao Felix Goal vs MLS All Stars pic.twitter.com/oWsmDQE6tS
— MO 👑 (@molfc_11) August 1, 2019
With the loss, the MLS All-Star team is now 6-9 all-time in friendlies against European clubs.