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Atlético Madrid

Simeone fined €20,000 for crotch-grabbing celebration but escapes Champions League touchline ban

19:14 GMT+4 07/03/2019
diego simeone - cropped
UEFA has reprimanded the Atletico Madrid over his actions against Juventus, but he will be in the dugout for the second leg of a crunch clash

Diego Simeone has been fined €20,000 for his celebration in Atletico Madrid's Champions League last-16 first-leg win over Juventus, but he has escaped a touchline ban.

The 48-year-old was charged with improper conduct by UEFA after celebrating Jose Gimenez's opening goal in the 2-0 win by grabbing his crotch.

Simeone attracted criticism for the gesture but he apologised after the match, explaining it was directed at Atletico fans to show them that the team "have cojones".

He told reporters: "It means we have balls, a lot of balls.

"To start [Diego] Costa and Koke after they hadn't played for a month takes balls."

Simeone added: "I did it as a player in Lazio-Bologna and I did it again to show our fans that we have cojones.

"It wasn't aimed at the other team, I was turning towards our own supporters.

"It's not a nice gesture, I'll admit, but I felt the need to do it. It was such a tough game, we fought so hard and Diego Costa worked really hard when he wasn't 100 per cent fit. I had to show what I was feeling.

"I can only apologise if anyone was offended, but I did it from the heart.

Simeone has now been sanctioned by UEFA's Control, Ethics and Disciplinary Body, but he will be free to be in the dugout for the second leg at the Allianz Stadium on Tuesday.

The Argentine tactician has said of a return date with Juve: “The tie is not over yet, there is still a game to play.

"For sure we will have to suffer against a great opponent, with great players.” 

On top of Simeone's sanctions, Atletico have been fined €38,000 for breaching regulations relating to blocking stairways and throwing objects.

Juve have been ordered to pay €30,000, while head coach Massimiliano Allegri has been warned, because of the game's late kick-off.