Atletico trounce Real Betis 1-0 with Costa strike in 74th minute
MADRID (SPAIN) – For the eighth consecutive season, Atletico Madrid sealed its Champions League qualification by trouncing Real Betis 1-0 at home on Saturday. The victory came through a late Diego Costa goal after having a player sent off and two goals being ruled out after VAR reviews.
Costa’s goal came in the 74th minute with a scraped header. However, Atletico had to wait for several minutes for the referee to determine whether the ball had hit his arm or shoulder before finding its way into the net.
The win put third-placed Atletico at 66 points after 36 games. They are nine ahead of Villarreal which is in fifth position. They also achieved coach Diego Simeone’s goal of reaching Europe’s premier competition in each of his full campaigns in charge.
Angel Correa’s goal was ruled out in the first half for a handball against Marcos Llorente. Alvaro Morata’s strike was ruled out for offside.
Betis came close to scoring through Andres Guardado and Loren Moron.
Mario Hermoso, Atletico defender, was sent off in the 57th minute after he got a red card for reckless tackle. Although Betis continued to dominate, they could not maintain their composure in front of the goal.
“We are lucky that I scuffed it because if I’d hit the ball cleanly it would have gone wide,” Costa said.
(Photos syndicated via Reuters)
This story has been edited by BH staff and is published from a syndicated field