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Rio Ferdinand and Joe Cole stick the boot into LaLiga after Chelsea's victory over Atletico Madrid

Published on: 24 February 2021

Former England stars Rio Ferdinand and Joe Cole believe the quality in LaLiga is a far cry from what it once was and Atletico Madrid's performance against Chelsea on Tuesday is proof of it.

Diego Simeone's side, who sit top of the Spanish top flight, produced an uninspiring display against the Premier League's fifth-placed side, ultimately losing the first leg of the Champions League tie 1-0 thanks to a stunning Olivier Giroud overhead kick.

The blues were good value for their victory and were rarely troubled by Luis Suarez and Co.

Speaking on BT Sport after the game, Ferdinand said: 'this is a big reflection how poor LaLiga is at the moment, didn’t really threaten.

'Chelsea seemed to coast, fantastic finish, and didn’t get tested after that. Not being at the stadium helps as well. They feed off that and probably lost that edge as well.

'When you play an away game in Europe, you get a 1-0 win you go home with that you’re laughing. Maybe even afford to switch it up a bit. He’ll be able to shffufle the pack again. If they’re professional about it they’ll sail through, this isn’t the Atletico Madrid team we’ve seen.

Joe Cole: the first real test of his regime and they’ve come through it. They made it an uneventful night, didn’t get Atletico anything to bite on. Tactically well done. If that’s the best la liga’s got to offer than it must be in trouble, and arguably not chelsea’s best side.

Cole: it’s definitely shifting. This team looked a shadow of themselves. I thought it was gonna be a tough one without kante but chelsea just dominated. Controlled possession, in charge of the game, and i was surprised simeone didn’t switch it up earlier. I don’t see how they can lay a glove on them at stamford bridge.


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