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Levante v Atlético Madrid Live Commentary, 28/10/2021

FT
2 - 2
LEV
ATM
E. Bardhi (37 pen)
E. Bardhi (90 pen)
A. Griezmann (12)
Matheus Cunha (76)
Estadio Ciudad de Valencia

Commentary

That's all from our coverage of this match, be sure to tune in for the next one. For now though, goodbye.
Despite nearly holding on until the final whistle, ill discipline, on both the pitch and the sidelines, cost Atletico two penalty goals, and the win, squandering any chance to move up into the Champions League places. For Levante however, their dire, winless situation continues, but their spirited performance in this match suggests that if and when things click for Javier Pereira's side, they're well within a chance of staying in La Liga this season.
Despite being booked for a needless foul, it was clear to see how much Koke's presence helped Atlético to control proceedings in midfield for large spells of that game. With a game-high 93 good passes and crosses, 63 of which were in Levante territory, it's no surprise to see how much the game opened up after Koke went off, as Atleti lost control of the midfield battle in the absence of their captain.
Well, a game that finished in controversial circumstances to say the least! Those last 10 minutes saw both sides throw caution to the wind and pile on the pressure, as Levante's two penalties saw them snatch a draw, and a point, when the reigning champions had three points in their grasp! Atleti's two goals were both impressive, but they didn't really do enough to put the game to bed; however, Levante's efforts can't be discounted. They were excellent in this game, and with performances like that, their first win won't be too far away.
FULL-TIME: LEVANTE 2-2 ATLETICO MADRID.
90' + 9' The crowd aren't happy one bit as the referee blows for full-time as Levante look to have carved out a promising-looking last attack, and Pier's protests earn him a second yellow card after full time!!!
90' + 8' Felix looks to slip a game-winning pass through to Correa, but Duarte nips in to intercept and set the hosts away on one last attack!
Rober
Yellow Card
Levante
90' + 6' Pier brings down both Felix and Carrasco in quick succession, and is rightfully booked.
90' + 4' WIDE!!! Vezo rises highest at the near post, but his powerful header flies just past the left stanchion and behind!!!
90' + 3' Levante pile on the pressure and Felipe is forced to give away a corner. The home crowd are in raptures here as the end to this match hots up!!
90' + 1' We're into a massive eight minutes of added time! Hold onto your hats, this is going to be a tense finish!
E. Bardhi
Penalty Goal
Levante
90' GOOOOALLL!!!! Bardhi's even cooler than for the first penalty, and calmly slots it past Oblak to level the scores as the game comes to a dramatic conclusion!!! They might not have enough in them to win it, but the fight from Levante has shown that they're not dead and buried just yet!
89' It's going to be Bardhi to step up once more for Levante, let's see if he can convert two penalties from two...
Á. Correa
Yellow Card
Atlético Madrid
87' There's a fair bit of push and shove going on inside Atleti's box as a small scuffle breaks out over the awarding of the penalty, and Correa's booked for his involvement in proceedings.
86' It's VAR time!!! Shouts for a Levante penalty roar around the ground as Lodi is assumed to have handballed a cross, and it's given!!!
J. Giménez
Yellow Card
Atlético Madrid
85' Gimenez is yellow carded for Atleti, for a fruitless effort at a tackle on Levante sub De Frutos.
84' Levante fly forward and have two shots deflected in quick succession, the first from Vezo comes straight back out, but the follow-up is won by Atleti who can start an attack of their own.
83' De Paul's been excellent since his introduction, and looks to set off on the run once more, before he's fouled by Bardhi.
81' Simeone loses his temper once again, and so does the referee, brandishing a second yellow card and sending the Atletico coach, who's team have just re-gained the lead, to the stands!!
Jorge de Frutos
Pepelu
Levante
80' The booked Pepelu is replaced for Levante, by Jorge de Frutos.
78' Cunha's been very, very lively since his introduction and that goal proves the point, He's had two shots in two minutes: one blocked, and the other nestled in the back of the Levante net.
Matheus Cunha
Goal
Atlético Madrid
76' GOOOALLL!!!! What an impact!!! It's Cunha with one of his first touches for Atleti!!! De Paul surges forward and drinks a delightful pass into the Brazilian, who makes no mistake as he smashes it past Fernandez to make it 2-1!!! That might be the winner for Atleti, and the hosts have less than 15 minutes left to respond!
Pablo Martínez
M. Malsa
Levante
76' The industrious Malsa comes off for the hosts, and Pablo Martinez replaces him.
74' Malsa really has been impressive for Levante in this game, making four interceptions and winning two fouls, as well as competing in a team-high 11 duels.
Matheus Cunha
A. Griezmann
Atlético Madrid
72' The champions' on-loan goalscorer Griezmann comes off after a noteworthy performance, and fellow summer import Matheus Cunha comes on in his place.
72' Correa and Pier tussle for the ball after a cross from Lodi, but the Atleti substitute is offside and so play breaks down regardless.
Miramón
Son
Levante
70' Son is also replaced, by Jorge Miramon for the hosts.
Cantero
Dani Gómez
Levante
70' Gomez is replaced up front for Levante, by Alejandro Cantero.
69' Felix is clattered, again, but the referee plays advantage, only to pull play back for a foul against the Atleti forward as he sticks out an arm to get past Malsa!
Renan Lodi
Hermoso
Atlético Madrid
67' The booked Hermoso comes off for Atleti, replaced by Renan Lodi.
Koke
Yellow Card
Atlético Madrid
65' Koke is given a yellow card, for a bad foul on Gomez.
65' De Paul and Correa are involved straight away, linking up to tee up a Trippier cross which is headed away, yet again by Duarte.
63' Pier's chipped pass looks to put Gomez through on goal, but the Levante striker is flagged for offside.
61' Franquesa and Gimenez fight for the ball at speed, and the Atletico man wins the race, preventing the Levante left-back from winning a corner.
Á. Correa
L. Suárez
Atlético Madrid
59' Suarez won't add to his six La Liga goals in this match, as he's withdrawn for Angel Correa.
R. De Paul
H. Herrera
Atlético Madrid
59' Herrera is withdrawn and Rodrigo de Paul comes on for him.
58' Felix has been fouled by near enough every Levante player so far, and this time it's Pepelu who pulls the Portugal forward back for another Atleti free-kick.
56' Levante have a two-on-one and Morales shapes to shoot, but Gimenez slides in at the last second to thump the ball clear of the danger area.
55' Trippier hooks an optimistic ball forward which Herrera chases down, but Levante keeper Fernandez collects just before the Mexico midfielder can make any connection with the ball.
Yellow Card
53' Atletico coach Simeone protests the referee's decision on a free-kick and is yellow-carded himself!
52' Carrasco wades his way into the box skilfully and is brought down, but the referee isn't budged by any penalty shouts from players or fans.
50' A Levante corner sees the ball bobbling about everywhere, but Son can't keep it in play for the hosts and the ball goes out for a goal kick.
49' Levante will be thankful that Suarez didn't score there, as Atletico haven’t lost any of the 20 La Liga matches in which Suarez has scored for them, winning 16, and drawing just four.
47' CHANCE!!! Atleti come out firirng as Carrasco whips in a beautiful rabona cross. It's headed on by Felix, but Suarez can't stretch far enough to tap it into the net and the ball goes wide!!! That would've been a dream start to the second half for the Madrid side.
46' Levante get us back under way, with the home fans ready to roar them all the way to the final whistle.
We're almost ready for the second half, and both teams re-enter the fray with this game still there to be won!
The hosts have stood firm against Atletico's star-studded front three so far, and Duarte alone has been forced into six clearances already, one more than the rest of his team-mates combined.
It's not been the greatest of first halves, but both sides have shown that they're well up for this battle. Atleti's quality shone through early as Griezmann bagged the opener, but since then Levante grew back into the game, and Suarez's clumsy foul in the box gave Bardhi the perfect chance to level the scores, which he duly did, and it's all square at the break.
45' + 1' HALF-TIME: LEVANTE 1-1 ATLETICO MADRID.
45' Carrasco has a great chance to cut inside and shoot but instead chooses to keep building the play, and Koke's eventual shot is blocked immediately by Malsa.
43' Felix looks to have been fouled by Pier, but the referee instead pulls him up for being offside from Felipe's ball.
41' Herrera chooses to cross, but this too comes to nothing as Duarte heads clear.
Pepelu
Yellow Card
Levante
40' Pepelu brings down Felix and is booked, and this free-kick is from just close enough a distance to tempt Herrera with a shot on goal.
39' He's been lively, Bardhi, and that goal follows two key passes already. He also leads his team for shots with two, one of which was that all-important leveller!
E. Bardhi
Penalty Goal
Levante
37' GOOOALLLL!!!! It's 1-1!!! Bardhi steps up from 12 yards and makes no mistake as he sends Oblak the wrong way and brings Levante level against the champions!!! Will this spur them on to go one better and snatch another in quick succession? There's only one way to find out.
36' PENALTY!!! The next corner sees Vezo attempt to control the ball, before he's brought down by Suarez!!! The referee ignores Suarez's pleas for innocence, and the home side can level it up here!
36' From the corner, it's a scramble in the box and a low shot from Bardhi is deflected and tipped behind once again for another corner!
35' Morales sprints forward on the break and has options, but his cross from the byline is more of a shot, and Oblak has to retreat quickly to tip it behind for a corner, although it probably wasn't bound for goal anyway.
33' Franquesa brings down Griezmann down the right-hand side, and concedes a free-kick.
31' Griezmann races forward and looks for options, but can't keep hold of the ball as Vezo gets back to intercept.
29' Duarte and Felix again contest for the ball, this time in the air but Felix comes off worse as he crashes to the ground in a heap.
28' Morales puts pressure on Felipe and tries to goad the Brazilian into fouling him, but the Atleti defender smartly blocks the ball out for a Levante corner.
27' The ball's boucning all over the Atleti box and Duarte attempts an ambitious half-volley. It's straight at Oblak though, and the Slovenia keeper gladly catches.
Felipe
Yellow Card
Atlético Madrid
25' Felipe scythes down Franquesa on the left wing with an awful tackle, and is rightly booked by the ref. We're less than half an hour into the match and two of the away side's centre-backs have already seen yellow cards.
24' Atleti try the same sort of play in their own half but panic, and Griezmann comes off worse in a 50-50 challenge with Morales that wins the champions a free-kick.
22' Atletico are simply tapping the ball to themselves around the outside of Levante's box, and the home side can't get a sniff of the ball at the moment.
20' Morales is down once again, this time after his opposition captain Koke lands a boot on the Levante forward's leg in an aggressive contest for the ball.
Hermoso
Yellow Card
Atlético Madrid
18' Hermoso hacks down Levante captain Morales down the right, and the home side have a free-kick from a good crossing position as Hermoso gets the game's first yellow card.
18' Some great link-up play from the hosts sees Gomez tee up Morales in the box, but his poor first touch sees the ball gratefully gathered by Oblak, and the chance goes begging.
16' Following their 2-0 victory at Wanda Metropolitano in February 2021, Levante have the chance to win consecutive La Liga matches against Atlético Madrid for the first time in this match, but after that early opener from Griezmann, that task looks very unlikely for the struggling hosts.
14' That's Griezmann's fourth goal for Atleti since returning to the club on loan from Bercelona, but only his first in La Liga so far. He's very much back at home after two seasons away from Diego Simeone's set-up.
Felipe
Assist
Atlético Madrid
12' That header back across goal from Felipe was superb, and Griezmann showed great attacking awareness to follow in from taking the corner, to rise above every defender and put his side 1-0 up!
A. Griezmann
Goal
Atlético Madrid
12' GOOOALLLL!!!! The champions take the lead!!!! There's shots aplenty from the corner, as Herrera's is deflected back out, but as the ball is headed back across goal, Griezmann, who took the original corner, pops up at the far post to head Atleti 1-0 in front!
11' Carrasco finds Felix in the box, who is dispossessed by Duarte, but only at the expense of a corner for the away side.
9' Griezmann is brought down from behind by the sliding Malsa, and the Levante midfielder is fortunate to not have been booked there.
7' Koke looks to find Felix on a forward run, but Duarte rises to head away the danger, luckily too for Levante as Felix would've been one-on-one with the keeper had Duarte not intervened.
5' Felix has the first shot of the match from the edge of the box, but Fernandez gets down to his right to push the Atletico forward's effort wide. He'd have been furious with himself if he hadn't saved that.
5' Felix skillfully gets away from Gomez and feeds Carrasco, who's flying run forward is halted by Son in cover.
3' Malsa brings down Koke, and Griezmann stands over the first free-kick of the match for Atleti.
1' We're under way at the Estadi Ciutat de Valencia, via the boot of Griezmann for Atletico!
The teams are on their way out, and it’s nearly time for this match to start!
Top scorer Luis Suarez leads the line for Atletico, and, flanked by Antoine Griezmann and Joao Felix in this match, will be hoping to score himself a few goals to get closer to Real Madrid’s Karim Benzema at the top of the La Liga scoring charts.
Captain Jose Luis Morales, who notched a brace in Levante’s recent 5-3 defeat to Sevilla, starts up front once more in this match, and the home fans’ spirits will be raised if he can help to secure the Granotes their first win of the season against the defending champions.
ATLETICO MADRID SUBS: Bernard Lecomte, Rodrigo de Paul, Angel Correa, Renan Lodi, Stefan Savic, Ivan Saponjic, Matheus Cunha, Sime Vrsaljko.
ATLETICO MADRID (3-4-2-1): Jan Oblak; Jose Gimenez, Felipe, Mario Hermoso; Kieran Trippier, Koke, Hector Herrera, Yannick Carrasco; Antoine Griezmann, Joao Felix; Luis Suarez.
LEVANTE SUBS: Daniel Cardenas, Alejandro Blesa, Roberto Soldado, Nikola Vukcevic, Jorge de Frutos, Carlos Clerc, Jorge Miramon, Coke, Pablo Martinez, Alejandro Cantero.
LEVANTE (5-3-2): Aitor Fernandez; Son, Rober Pier, Oscar Duarte, Ruben Vezo, Enric Franquesa; Pepelu, Mickael Malsa, Enis Bardhi; Dani Gomez, Jose Luis Morales.
Reigning champions Atletico Madrid haven’t had the start to the season that they would’ve wanted either, they lie seventh and are already six points off first-placed Real Sociedad, although this upcoming match is one of two games they have in hand over the surprise league leaders.
Levante’s start to the season has been abysmal, they’re yet to win and are languishing in 19th. However, a win in this match, by at least three goals, would see them climb out of the relegation zone at Cadiz’s expense.
Hello, and welcome to live coverage of this fixture in La Liga, between Levante and Atletico Madrid.