Lisbon (dpa) – Julian Nagelsmann just didn’t want to be infected with the crown’s short but violent excitement at Atlético Madrid.
In sunny Estoril squad quarters, Bundesliga football club coach RB Leipzig was unimpressed by speculation about a possible postponement or even cancellation of the first class duel on Thursday (9 p.m. / Sky). “I noticed it, but I didn’t let it get close to me. We’re focused on ourselves,” the 33-year-old said ahead of the most important game of his career.
Shortly before the quarter-finals of the Champions League, two cases of coronavirus caused great unrest at Atlético. While the Saxons were able to continue their preparation for the game at Lisbon’s Estadio José Alavalade on the Atlantic beach, Spain’s top club found themselves stranded in Madrid for the first time. It wasn’t until the afternoon that it all became clear: a second round of necessary testing did not result in further cases of corona among players and supervisors.
Nagelsmann’s statement, made rather soberly before, has therefore been found to be correct. “There are clear UEFA protocols on what to do in such cases. We are going into the week as usual and preparing for Thursday’s game. If there are two remaining cases, it won’t. won’t have much impact, ”the RB said. -Coach. UEFA had previously made it clear that it did not consider any serious consequences necessary. “The match must be played as planned,” said the European Football Union on Request.
There is now no doubt, subject to mandatory final tests up to 24 hours before kick-off. But at least at Atlético on Monday, there was no question of normal preparation. Instead of starting the trip to Lisbon in the evening, the crowd of over 90 found themselves stranded in Madrid and anxiously awaited the results of the short-term test series.
It wasn’t until the good news came in the afternoon that coach Diego Simeone was able to return to Lisbon mode. The charter flight for Tuesday was announced immediately. When Atlético was able to organize the first training session at the Benfica campus in Seixal, however, it was still not clear. Either way, forward Angel Correa and defender Sime Vrsaljko will not be there, who the club say have no symptoms but had to go into quarantine due to the positive tests at Madrid. In sporting terms, Atlético can overcome the failure of the duo.
Despite the now seemingly smooth process, the Atlético affair made the tournament blitz great risks for the clear hilt pot. Bayern Munich coach Hansi Flick had previously warned of the positive cases at Madrid. “We really have to be careful,” he told the German news agency in a conversation before the current situation with opponents in Leipzig became known. The German record champions are preparing for their quarter-finals against FC Barcelona on Friday (9 p.m. / Sky) in the Algarve.
According to the regulations, a bye to the semi-finals would have been possible for Leipzig if Atlético had not been able to compete. In principle, however, UEFA would also have the option of postponing matches in the event of acute corona. However, this would not be possible without altering the overall schedule, which is already tight. After the quarter-finals from August 12 to 15, it will take place on August 18 and 19. August continued with the semi-finals. The final is scheduled for August 23.
Atlético could have played against Leipzig a day or two later, but the match winner would have even less regeneration time than the opponent in the semi-final. Because the first quarter-finals between Paris Saint-Germain and Atalanta Bergamo will take place on Wednesday.