Feyenoord can forget the dream of hibernating in the Champions League this season. The Rotterdam team lost the crucial home game with Atlético Madrid 1-3 on Tuesday and therefore finished third in group E.
Because Lazio won 2-0 at home against Celtic earlier in the evening, Feyenoord had to draw at least to have a chance of winning its first Champions League wintering since the 1999/2000 season. But in De Kuip, coach Arne Slot’s team fell short.
Atlético struck after fourteen minutes thanks to an own goal by Lutsharel Geertruida. After halftime, defender Mario Hermoso doubled the lead with a nice lob. Feyenoord scored the tying goal in a swirling Kuip through Mats Wieffer.
But due to a second Rotterdam own goal – this time by Giménez – the home team lost. The defeat means that the Rotterdam team will no longer be able to survive in the Champions League, even in the event of a possible victory over Celtic in the last group match.
Feyenoord is certain of third place and therefore the knockout phase of the Europa League after the winter. Slot’s team will play its next top match on Sunday. Eredivisie leader PSV will be the opponent in De Kuip.
Slot surprised with Minteh
It was expected that Slot would make way for Ramiz Zerrouki, just like in the last three Champions League matches. Instead, he surprised with a starting spot for Yankuba Minteh. The Gambian started instead of Luka Ivanusec. Slot almost saw that choice rewarded within nine minutes, but Minteh shot wide from an Atlético leg from about ten meters.
It happened in an opening phase in which Feyenoord was fierce and had some opportunities. At the same time, Atlético’s ability to strike on the counter-attack also came to the fore several times. For example, striker Álvaro Morata was able to run freely towards Justin Bijlow after eleven minutes after a pass from star Antoine Griezmann, but the Feyenoord goalkeeper made a good save.
Feyenoord scored a goal after fourteen minutes. After a cross, the ball fell into the Rotterdam goal via Geertruida after miscommunication in the Rotterdam rearguard. Feyenoord then chased the equalizer, but could not put pressure on Atlético. Morata was able to quickly make it 0-2, but headed just wide from close range.
Unfortunate match Giménez
Immediately after the break, Griezmann hit the post with a hard shot. With Ayase Ueda in the team instead of Igor Paixão, Feyenoord seemed to gain more control over the game. Feyenoord got its best chance through striker Giménez, who was unfortunate in his finishing against Excelsior (2-4 win) despite his hat trick on Saturday. But he mowed over the ball from a promising position.
Soon afterwards it was a success via Hermoso. He lobbed the ball beautifully over Bijlow from an almost impossible angle. The game seemed decided, especially because Atlético – where Memphis Depay came on – had several chances to score 0-3. But out of nowhere Feyenoord fought back.
Wieffer headed crosswise from a corner. For a moment it seemed like an exciting final phase was about to begin in De Kuip, until Feyenoord striker Giménez headed the ball from a free kick into his own goal, making the final score 1-3.
The post first appeared on www.nu.nl