Aguero inspires Atletico
Atletico Madrid showed their UEFA Champions League credentials with an excellent 3-0 win over PSV Eindhoven.
By Graeme Bailey
Last Updated: 16/09/08 10:27pm
Atletico Madrid showed their UEFA Champions League credentials with an excellent 3-0 win over PSV Eindhoven in Holland.
Madrid now sit top of Group D, ahead of Liverpool, and on this performance they could easily finish there as they overpowered the Dutch giants with some brilliant attacking play.
Sergio Aguero was sublime for the hour he was on the pitch and opened the scoring just nine minutes in from close range.
The Argentine then doubled Atletico's lead with a brilliantly taken goal just 10 minutes before the break to all-but seal the win.
The three points were secured by Javier Aguirre's side just before the hour when Maniche finished off another clinical attack.
Atletico should have taken the lead less than 60 seconds into the clash as Aguero latched onto a through ball which Jeremie Brechet tried to clear and missed.
The Argentine continued into the box but his shot was straight at Andreas Isaksson, who was able to smoother the shot.
PSV were on the back foot for much of the opening period, despite a couple of nice runs from Nordin Amrabat and Ibrahim Afellay, but neither could find a way through a stubborn Atletico backline, who looked comfortable once their side went ahead.
Great work from Maniche on the edge of the box saw him brought down, but before he was clipped he played the ball through to Luis Garcia and the former Liverpool man fired a low cross into the six-yard box for Aguero to turn home.
Just minutes later and Isaksson was at full stretch to push Simao's shot wide as Atletico looked rampant.
Diego Forlan almost converted Aguero's cross form close-range but Carlos Salcido brilliantly cleared his lines, but that proved to the Uruguayan's last contribution as he pulled his hamstring moments later and was replaced by Florent Sinama-Pongolle.
And Pongolle had an immediate impact as he burst down the right to create the second goal. He crossed into the box for Aguero to brilliantly control and turn in one movement before firing high past Isaksson.
At the break PSV changed things and Otman Bakkal came on. The home side improved and threatened almost immediately as Edison Mendez's long-range drive saw Leo Franco called into action for the first time as he tipped the ball over the bar and he was again needed just moments later to deny Afellay.
Just as PSV threatened to get back into the game, Atletico hit them with a brilliant counter attack as Simao won the ball in midfield, he found Luis Garcia, who in turn found Maniche and he fired under Isaksson.
With a three-goal advantage Atletico relaxed and with half-an-hour to go even had the luxury of taking Aguero off.
PSV pushed on and Afellay, Amrabat and Danny Koevermans all came close, but they could not find a way through as Atletico deservedly took all three points.
Next up Atletico will entertain Marseille, who lost to Liverpool, while PSV have the daunting task of a trip to Anfield.
|PSV Eindhoven||Team Statistics||Atlético de Madrid|
|0||1st Half Goals||2|
|5||Shots on Target||7|
|13||Shots off Target||1|