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Primera División

  • February 11, 2012
  • • 17:00
  • • Campos de Sport de El Sardinero, Santander
  • Referee: Javier Estrada Fernández
  • • Attendance: 18000
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Racing Santander 0-0 Atletico Madrid: Juanjo Gonzalez's side thwart Atleti's climb up La Liga with a resolute defensive display

Racing Santander 0-0 Atletico Madrid: Juanjo Gonzalez's side thwart Atleti's climb up La Liga with a resolute defensive display

Radamel Falcao - Atletico Madrid

Diego Simeone's side wasted countless opportunities at El Sardinero when they came up against an inspired Tono as Atleti were held to a 0-0 draw

Atletico Madrid continued their unbeaten record under Diego Simeone but despite numerous opportunities were held to a 0-0 draw by a determined Racing side at El Sardinero.

Juanjo Gonzalez's side were indebted to Tono after Alvaro Dominguez, Arda Turan and Falcao in particular were all denied by the shot-stopper, who secured an unlikely point for the Cantabrians.

Diego Simeone's side could have found themselves ahead in the opening 15 minutes when Falcao was presented with two fantastic opportunities. The Colombian failed to connect with a delivery driven across goal before directing a header, from just six yards out, straight at Tono.

Racing struggled to threaten Atleti's goal as they were content with preventing the visitors to work a clear opening. Christian Stuani wasted Racing's best opportunity, bringing out a comfortable save from Thibaut Courtois.

After an uninspiring opening Los Rojiblancos enjoyed a sustained period of possession culminating in Arda Turan lashing a long range effort toward goal. Tono had to be alert as he was forced into palming the ball away.

In the last action of the first-half Racing appealed to the officials for handball in the Atletico penalty area following a free-kick. But it was to no avail as the sides went into the break level.

Racing's Adrian created the first chance in the second half when he worked space on the edge of the area. The Spaniards' footwork gave him sight of goal but his shot was comfortable enough for Courtois, who made a routine save.

Atleti responded well and Tono was forced into a vital stop from Falcao. The Colombian attempted to find Adrian at the far post, who would have had the simplest of tap-ins had the ball reached him.

The visitors then continued to pressurise and Diego's battling run ended in the Brazilian hitting the upright before Tono denied him soon after with a one-handed save. Following the 'keepers acrobatics the ball fell at Falcao's feet but his effort from an acute angle rebounded off the outside of the post when faced with an open goal.

With 15 minutes remaining Tono made two vital stops in quick succession as he single-handedly kept the scores level. His reactionary save, which saw him punch the ball clear, from Alvaro Dominguez's point blank header invited Atleti to send the ball across again. Falcao was lurking at the far post and his header into the opposite corner forced the shot-stopper to make a wonderful stop diving to his right.

Atleti continued to press in the latter stages of the match but were unable to find an elusive goal, and despite Simone's side still yet to concede under his management, the new coach will be in disbelief as to how his side failed win the match.

Racing will be hoping to repeat their defensive display when they visit the Santiago Bernabeu next to face Real Madrid, whilst Atletico return to Europa League action against Lazio.

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