Sports: Antoine Griezmann masterclass guides Atletico Madrid to Europa League title

The Frenchman, who was born simply 70 kilometers from the ultimate venue, scored objectives both aspect of half time, earlier than captain Gabi put the icing on the cake with a 3rd late on.

Marseille began the sport nicely and had been unlucky to see a Kostas Mitroglou header hit the publish within the second half, however the French aspect had been comfortably second greatest all evening.

If this was to be Griezmann’s last recreation in an Atletico shirt — the ahead has suitors from throughout Europe — then he actually made it one for the followers to recollect.

Because the gamers emerged onto the pitch, barely seen by means of the thick smoke of flares let off by the Marseille followers, the bottom rumbled with expectation.

Though this Atletico aspect boast vastly extra European expertise than their French opponents, it was Marseille who began the higher.

The primary likelihood got here inside minutes, swiftly carving open an uncharacteristically static Atletico protection, which has been the stingiest in Europe this season.

A neat interchange between Dimitri Payet and Florian Thauvin culminated within the former sliding an inch-perfect by means of ball into the trail of Valère Germain, however his shot was skewed horribly extensive of the objective.

The Ligue 1 aspect continued to press, clearly buoyed by the audibly pro-Marseille crowd — the ultimate being performed simply 300 kilometers away in Lyon — and heart again Adil Rami spun and cracked a shot narrowly previous the publish.

Every membership had been given an allocation of 11,500 for the ultimate — a paltry quantity criticized throughout Europe — however you bought the sense many thousand extra Marseille followers, by hook or criminal, had managed to get their palms on additional tickets.

Their gamers gave the impression to be feeding off the early power, specifically Bouna Sarr down the fitting, who was proving an actual handful for Atleti left again Lucas Hernández.

Sarr had suffered a dislocated shoulder simply 5 days earlier within the draw in opposition to Guingamp, however it was clear why Marseille had been so wanting to rapidly patch him as much as return to motion.

Atletico had barely bought a foothold on recreation however, because the clock struck 20 minutes, they in some way discovered themselves in entrance.

Marseille goalkeeper Steve Mandanda handed the ball quick to Zambo Anguissa, however the defender’s horror contact allowed Gabi to play the ball by means of to Griezmann, who coolly sat Mandanda down and slid the ball to his proper.

The boy from Macon, a city simply 70 km away from Lyon, had returned with a bang to the shores he was compelled to go away as a baby, deemed too small to make it as a footballer in France.

That objective appeared to suck the assumption out of Marseille and so they had been dealt a swift double blow when captain and talisman Payet was compelled off with a recurrence of a hamstring damage quickly after.

Atleti now had their opponents the place they wished them and Marseille, having spent the previous 10 minutes chasing shadows, had been grateful to listen to the half time whistle.

But when they felt the break was welcome respite, their night was solely going to worsen quickly after the restart.

Marseille, once more the masters of their very own downfall, gave the ball away inside their half, permitting Koke to play a ball by means of to Griezmann.

The Frenchman took two touches together with his left foot, the primary an beautiful drag to deliver the ball below his management, earlier than dinking a pleasant end over the onrushing Mandanda.

Regardless of there being greater than half an hour left to play, that, you felt, was that. With Payet off the pitch, Marseille seemed bereft of concepts as they tried to interrupt down Atleti’s skilled protection.

There appeared a scarcity of hope, in addition to high quality, each time Marseille bought into the ultimate third, always gifting Ateltico possession and permitting them to counter.

Griezmann continued to steal the present, his deft touches and fancy flicks had been an excessive amount of for the Marseille protection, wriggling by means of challenges at will.

Though Marseille’s gamers had seemingly given up, having been given the runaround by the French star, their followers actually hadn’t.

The noise once more turned deafening and Marseille pressed ahead in a single last try and get again into the sport.

Sarr’s terrific cross into the field was met by the pinnacle of substitute Mitroglou, however the Greek ahead seemed on in disbelief because the ball hit the publish and in some way spun away from objective.

However any lingering hope was quickly extinguished, as Atleti captain and stalwart Gabi drove house a 3rd objective with simply three minutes remaining.

With the trophy now inside their grasp, Atletico’s present golden boy, Griezmann, was then substituted for the membership’s former.

On got here Fernando Torres, the boyhood Atleti fan with greater than 400 appearances for the membership, to rejoice his first ever main trophy for the membership he used to assist from the stands as a child.

Torres shall be leaving on the of the season, his contract for his second spell on the membership not being renewed. As fairytale finishes go, it is not a nasty strategy to bow out from the membership he loves.


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