Six years after winning his most recent Europa League title , Atlético de Madrid will face Marseille in the final on Wednesday as the big favorite, but with many differences regarding the status he held in 2012. Since Diego Simeone has led the Atletico Madrid team, Atlético de Madrid has seen an exponential growth in all respects, but only with the conquest of their third Europa League, all under Cholo's command, will be able to highlight this great progression to consecrate as one of the greats of the modern era.
The difference between Atlético de Madrid that defeated Athletic Bilbao 3-0 in May 2012 and the one that today faces its third European final in four years is abysmal. Six years ago, Atlético had been the big surprise of the season. It was an impoverished team, unstable, and that at mid-season had been forced to seek relief from Gregorio Manzano due to poor results. His season, outside Europe, he had not passed the first round in Cup and had barely reached the fifth place in the league - his best crop in three years. Big Europe Since that final of 2012, Atletico Madrid conquered the European Super Cup after beating Chelsea , Champions League champion , and has played at least one round of direct elimination phases of European competitions. When it was worse, in 2012-13, he fell in the Europa League round of 32 against Rubin Kazan . That was only the beginning of a 'golden age' with Cholo Simeone at the helm and would not allow what, in current parameters, would constitute a great disappointment.Take a look at our VIP corebet predictions.
Since then, he has reached at least the Champions League quarterfinals four times, reaching the final twice (2014 and 2016) and one to the semi-final (2017). Thanks to that, Atlético is part of a select group, as only Bayern Munich , Juventus and Real Madrid have managed to reach the final on at least two occasions in the last six years. "Our way of working has become a reference for many teams in Europe; the club has grown, the boss has grown, we have grown, "said Atletico captain Gabi, one of the five survivors of Bucharest. His European stability is his great pride, but not the only rojiblanco success. The differences are clear.
The rojiblanco team has remained in the top three in the league for six seasons; He was proclaimed champion in 2014 after winning his first title after 18 years. Of the rest, he finished third behind Real Madrid and Barcelona in four seasons, and is one match away from finishing this season in second place. The great success of the third team of Spain in the League is reflected, above all, in the goal. The Atletico goalkeeper has been the least thrashed of the Spanish championship in four of the last five seasons. Today's Chelsea goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois will take the Zamora Trophy in 2013 and 2014, while Jan Oblak is one game away from winning his third straight title to Spain's goal-less goalie after taking the trophy in 2016 and 2017. The Slovenian has received 20 goals in 36 games played this season for an average of 0.56 goals per game. It will be the first time that an Atlético de Madrid keeper has won the trophy for the least-conceded goalkeeper on three occasions, something that has only been achieved by Athletic Bilbao, Real Sociedad and Barcelona.