Atletico Madrid manager Diego Simeone says that he cannot be more proud of his players after they achieved a 2-2 draw with table leaders Real Madrid in the latest league match between the two clubs. Both teams are intense rivals due to their location, but this season Atletico have joined Real Madrid in the race for the title to add more spice to the competition. For long periods of the season, they were in touch with Barcelona. It was only in the last few weeks that Atletico Madrid have slipped away from the table top.

They were looking to regain it once again when they took on Real Madrid at the Vicente Calderon. Despite conceding an early goal to Karim Benzema, they managed to get back into the match with two goals from Koke and Gabi. This looked like being enough for Atletico to get the win that would send them top of the table, but Cristiano Ronaldo equalised in the final few minutes of the match. It was a feisty encounter, but it finished as a stalemate.

Simeone, though, was extremely happy with the way his players applied themselves in the match especially considering that this Real Madrid team have won all the matches since the first week of February.

“We started with a goal that hit us. We had a great reaction after the goal. The team started to play nicely: moving between lines, pressing well, playing in their rivals’ area, and creating many opportunities – until the second half. Then their second goal came, but the team did a great job. I am proud of them.

“The result is what it is. However many opportunities you have to win the match, what counts is the final result,” said the former player to the club’s official site after the match.