Simeone: Costa’s ‘rage’ vital for Atletico

Diego Simeone praised Diego Costa’s “rage” after the striker secured Atletico Madrid’s place in the Europa League final.

Costa scored the only goal of the game in the semi-final second leg against Arsenal, as Simeone’s men went through 2-1 on aggregate.

The former Chelsea frontman had not found the net since February after struggling with a hamstring problem, but Atletico boss Simeone praised the 29-year-old’s determination afterwards.

“Costa came for this, to be important for the team, in games like this,” Simeone said.

“The team needed a forward with his rage, his intensity, the mistakes he provokes in opponents. Along with the other forwards we have, that was very important.”

Atletico have now reached their fourth European final in the space of seven seasons, with Simeone’s side facing Marseille, in Lyon, on May 16.

“I’m the visible head of a group who have worked here in an extraordinary way for six years, many people working every day so things go in a positive way,” Simeone said.

“There is a loyalty here that is very difficult to find.

“The club counted on us in the moment, and we keep giving our best. Stopping to think all we are doing is not good, we need to look at Espanyol, our game on Sunday, and stay second in La Liga, which is very important for us.”

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