I have to say that I like Atletico Madrid a lot. I like their style, I like their swagger and I have nothing but respect for the fact that they're top of La Liga and in the Champions League semifinals despite being financial minnows compared to their competition. Anyone who knocks Barcelona out of this tournament has to be regarded as a kindred spirit.
After a 0-0 draw at the Vincente Calderon in the first leg, it looks like the respect is mutual:
I think there are different ways to win a match. You do whatever offers opportunity. If we all played the same way, it'd be boring. It's beautiful when there are different approaches. To defend well is not easy. Neither is attacking. Football is a fluid game. Nobody has the absolute right answer.
To go the English leaders, win 2-0, with so many players out... [we are facing] a super-competitive squad.
Of course, the things I like Simeone for -- the balance he's built in his side and his tactical flexibility -- are things that are guaranteed to make life more difficult at Stamford Bridge tomorrow. While Chelsea versus Atletico Madrid might not thrill the neutrals, I can almost guarantee it will be edge of the seat stuff for those emotionally invested in the teams.
- Chelsea to donate Stamford Bridge pitch to Aldershot Town
- Chelsea vs. Atletico Madrid: You choose the squad
- Cech, Terry, Eto'o, and Hazard all return to training ahead of Atletico contest
- Carragher and Neville provide the masterclass punditry that the Chelsea masterclass at Liverpool truly deserves
- The Daily Hilario: Craig Ferguson; Bayern vs. Real