Simeone addresses Suarez anger after substitution as barren Champions League away run continues

The striker’s poor scoring form away from home in Europe continued in Wednesday’s defeat at Chelsea

Diego Simeone said he understood Luis Suarez’s anger after the Atletico Madrid forward was visibly frustrated upon his substitution in the 59th minute of Wednesday’s defeat at Chelsea. 

Atletico fell 2-0 at Stamford Bridge in the Champions League last-16 second leg, sealing a 3-0 aggregate defeat. 

Suarez has been in red-hot form in La Liga this season, scoring 18 goals in 24 games, but exits the Champions League having failed to score in six outings this season.

What was said?

At his post-game press conference, Simeone said of Suarez: “It’s normal that he got angry when he was taken off, players want to stay on.

“We wanted a new way to attack them so we made changes.”

Though Suarez struggled, Simeone said he was happy with the performance of two other Atletico players.

“Tonight was Joao Felix’s best game for the club, this is the player we want,” the manager added. “Saul played well too.

“When your rival is better than you, accept it and learn from it.”

Suarez’s barren Champions League run goes on

Suarez has now failed to score in his last 25 away matches in the Champions League, a run that stretches all the way back to September 2015.

The Champions League has proven to be a difficult competition recently for the former Barcelona striker, as he has tallied just seven goals in 33 appearances over the last four seasons combined. 

What’s next for Atletico?

Having now been eliminated from the Copa del Rey and Champions League, Atletico will have the rest of the season to focus solely on their La Liga title push. 

Simeone’s side currently lead the league by four points over Barcelona, with Real Madrid a further two points behind. 

Atletico will be back in action on Sunday with a match against Alaves, before returning from the international break with a game against Sevilla on April 4. 

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