Atletico Madrid 1-1 Valencia: 3 Players who were poor and 2 who impressed | La Liga 2019/20
#2 Impressed: Diego Costa
Diego Costa put an end to recent criticism surrounding his contribution in front of goal by registering his 50th La Liga goal for Atletico Madrid against Valencia.
The 31-year-old striker gave the hosts a half-time lead after converting a deserved penalty in the 36th minute. The Spaniard found his cross blocked by Denis Cheryshev's raised hand in the box, prompting the referee to consult VAR and subsequently award the spot-kick.
Costa carried a bulk of the pressing alongside an uninspired Alvaro Morata but the duo was largely wasteful in their chances in the final third. The only redemption for the former came when he stepped up for the penalty and sent Jasper Cillessen the wrong way with a confident finish into the left corner of the net.
The former Chelsea striker's only other goal this season came during the Rojiblancos' 2-0 win over Mallorca in September so a goal at home might just offer him the necessary push to get him back to his previous lethal form.
#2 Poor: Alvaro Morata
Alvaro Morata looks a shadow of his former self as the Spanish international had yet another woeful outing against Valencia on Saturday evening. The striker is enduring a barren spell in front of goal, having found the back of the net just once in seven appearances in all competitions so far this season.
It is not rare for strikers to have lean spells, but Morata looks low on confidence and although he did manage to get into good positions at times, the former Chelsea star ultimately failed to apply his finishing touches or time his final balls.
Morata’s latest lacklustre display is sure to frustrate Atletico Madrid boss Diego Simeone, who substituted the 26-year-old for the second La Liga game running. A lot was expected from the Spaniard since his move from Chelsea in January, but so far the striker has failed to become an undisputed member of Los Rojiblancos.
Following a string of disappointing performances, it will not be surprising to see Morata being dropped from Atletico Madrid’s starting line-up for their upcoming Champions League game against Bayer Leverkusen on Tuesday night.