Loading...
Loading Live Scoring...
*All times CAT (GMT+2)

Football | Spain

Radamel Falcao © Action Images

Atletico kick off busy Asian summer



Atletico Madrid kicked off a busy summer of Asian tours by top European football clubs on Monday when they arrived in Singapore fresh from downing city rivals Real to win the Spanish Cup.

Atletico, brandishing the trophy they won in dramatic fashion on Friday, are making a whistle-stop visit despite still being involved in Spain's La Liga, in which they will play their penultimate game this weekend.

"The first thing to do is to rest and sleep," cautioned their manager Diego Simeone, at a packed press conference where he appeared next to the gleaming trophy.

"It's a very good feeling to have the feeling of winning two days ago and here, two days after, in Singapore on a high note," added the former Argentina international.

Atletico will play a Singapore select team on the artificial turf of the wealthy, Southeast Asian city-state's 8 000-capacity Jalan Besar Stadium on Wednesday.

They have enjoyed a heady weekend, after they won 2-1 against Real –whose coach Jose Mourinho and star player Cristiano Ronaldo were both sent off – and went on an open-top bus parade in front of thousands of fans in central Madrid.

"It's a dream come true after such a good season," their captain, Gabriel Fernandez, said of the win against Real. Atletico have also secured third place in La Liga behind Barcelona and Real.

"The team achieved a good position and this is the best way to end the season, beating our arch-rivals Real Madrid in the King's (Spanish) Cup. All the players were very happy to finish the season on a high note."

Atletico, whose prolific striker Radamel Falcao is attracting strong interest from other clubs, are at the head of the queue this year as the some of Europe's best teams head east to bolster their ranks of Asian fans.

Barcelona and Manchester United, the champions of Spain and England respectively, and Liverpool, Chelsea and Arsenal are all expected to draw large crowds to their friendly games and publicity sessions in the coming weeks.

Manchester United will play their first games under new coach David Moyes, while Arsenal will break new ground by becoming the first English Premier League team to play in Vietnam.

Pre-season tours have become a staple of the big European teams, who are closely followed by Asian fans and draw significant income from the sale of TV rights and merchandise across the region.

Shop

Gerrard: My Autobiography
Steven Gerrard is a hero to millions, not only as the inspirational captain of Liverpool FC, but as a key member of the England team.
R161.00
Rafa: My Story
Revelatory memoir from the greatest sportsman in the world today.
R182.00
Mitre Monde Soccer Ball - White
Voted as one of the UK's favourite match balls
R219.00


Comments

More expert analysis and opinion from Sport24
The opinions expressed by Sport24 experts and bloggers are theirs alone, and do not necessarily represent those of SuperSport

Event Streaming

Channel Streaming

Other Live Streaming

Event Streaming

Channel Streaming

Sports Talk



Dr Errol Sweeney
German ref epitomised what refereeing is all about
I’m regularly asked what is required to be a top class referee in soccer. What are the basics, the...

Segun Odegbami
Barcelona on my mind
I guess every reader of this column knows by now that I am a fan of Barcelona.

Calvin Emeka Onwuka
Jose's feeling the heat
Many of my regular readers here will know I am neither a Jose Mourinho apologist nor a cult...

John Dykes
Make the call, ref!
Here’s an excerpt from an alternative, purely fictitious match report from Saturday’s Barclays...

Carol Radull
Arsenal, it's good to be third
I love making Manchester United supporters angry. And nowadays it’s so easy to do that.

Neil Tovey
Who scored in the transfer window?
The January transfer window is challenging as you are either getting players who are short of game...