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Atletico wins the “final” for fourth place – racism against Neco Williams

Atletico wins the “final” for fourth place – racism against Neco Williams

After beating Athletic Bilbao 3-1, Atletico Madrid set the stage for another season in the Champions League. The game was overshadowed by the racism scandal.

The focus was in Madrid in several ways: a racist insult to Bilbao's top scorer Neco Williams.
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Atletico Madrid entered into a duel with Athletic Bilbao under pressure. The mistake committed by Deportivo Alaves (0-2) put the Rojiblancos back in the fight for fourth place, and the Basque Country raised its tally to three points thanks to its 1-1 draw with Granada.

But Atleti withstood this pressure in the traditional comparison and secured the lead by six points for the final stage of the 2023/24 Spanish League with a 3-1 victory. The Madridistas still have five matches to play. Contestants seem mostly possible with Mallorca (A), Vigo (H), Getafe (A), Osasuna (H) and Real Sociedad (H). But what does that mean in what has been a completely inconsistent season for Simeone's side, who have struggled the most in the top seven in the table with nine defeats.

Stir before the break

Argentine Rodrigo De Paul opened the scoring after a quarter of an hour with a deflected and therefore unstoppable shot from the second row, and it was the 29-year-old's second goal of the season. The most notable thing was the racist insults directed at Bilbao's Spanish international player Neco Williams shortly before the end of the first half. Atletico captain Koke apologized to the visiting professional during the two-minute break. Williams, in turn, responded shortly after in a sporting manner, completing a Basque counterattack against Oblak to equalize 1-1 (45).

The second division belongs to Atletico. Koke passed the ball to Correa with a precise header, which the Argentine striker executed skillfully and then held his nerve against Unai Simon – 2-1 (52) and the ninth goal of the season for Correa.

Unai Simon is unlucky

Cup winner Bilbao were now challenged, but the next goal was also scored by the opposition, who had recently lost to Borussia Dortmund in the Champions League. Samuel Leno shot into the goal from the left half, hitting the left post, where the ball hit the back of the visiting goalkeeper, Unai Simon, and from there it entered the net (80). Samuel Leno almost made the score 4-1 with a counterattack in the final stage from Griezmann's pass (90). In the end, the score was 3-1 in favor of Atletico.

The winner will travel to the island of Mallorca in the Balearic Islands at the weekend, with the match kicking off on Saturday at 9pm. Bilbao play the day before and have to return to the greater Madrid area – they will host Getafe for the start of Matchday 34 on Friday evening.