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Madrid absences won't affect Atletico - Simeone

21 April 2015, 20:32

Madrid - Atletico Madrid coach Diego Simeone has refused to accept a host of injuries and suspensions to key Real Madrid players has given his side the upper hand in their Champions League quarter-final tie.

Simeone's side travel to the Santiago Bernabeu on Wednesday with a semi-final place on the line after a 0-0 draw in the first-leg last week extending Atletico's unbeaten run over Real to seven games this season.

Also read: Benzema injury gives Hernandez Real chance

The hosts will be without the injured Luka Modric, Gareth Bale and Karim Benzema, as well as Marcelo through suspension.

"The characteristics of the players that will come in are not the same," Simeone said on Tuesday.

"That alerts you to the enthusiasm those that will replace them will play with, but not much changes for us. We just need to look for a way to cause them problems."

Atletico held on particularly in the first-half at the Vicente Calderon last week as Real peppered Jan Oblak's goal.

But Simeone insisted he wasn't surprised by the European champions' performance despite the fact they have failed to score in four visits to the Calderon this season.

"Their intensity in the first-half was among the best they've played all season.

"They moved the ball, were direct and quick. It is what you expect of one of the best teams in the world and that is what they are."

By contrast, Atletico are almost at full strength as Simeone confirmed that Modric's Croatian international teammate Mario Mandzukic will be fit to feature despite an ongoing ankle problem meaning the suspended Mario Suarez is the only man unavailable to the Argentine.



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