BARCELONA (Sporting Alert) — Diego Simeone’s gamble with Diego Costa has backfired after the Atletico Madrid striker limped off the pitch early in the La Liga title clash against Barcelona Saturday night.
Costa, the leading goalscorer for Atletico Madrid this season, had only returned from a hamstring strain, but head coach Simeone and his medical staff opted to take a gamble and start him.
However, the Spanish international, who has scored over 30 goals in all competition this season, pull up attempting to chase a ball played out wide and had to be subbed out of the game and replaced by Adrian Lopez.
There was another blow for Atletico Madrid, as midfield playmaker Arda Turan was also forced off the pitch with what looks like a hip problem after colliding with Barcelona’s Cesc Fabregas.
He has been replaced by Raul Garcia, while Simeone looks in disbelief at the touchline.
Barcelona v Atletico Madrid
Barcelona XI: Pinto, Alves, Pique, Mascherano, Adriano, Busquets, Fabregas, Iniesta, Sanchez, Pedro, Messi.
Subs: Olazabal, Xavi, Neymar, Jordi Alba, Song, Bartra, Tello.
Atletico Madrid XI: Courtois, Juanfran, Miranda, Godin, Filipe Luis, Gabi, Tiago, Koke, Arda Turan, Villa, Costa.
Subs: Aranzubia, Alderweireld, Sosa, Mario Suarez, Diego, Adrian, Raul Garcia.