Costa makes winning return

Diego Costa repaid the faith of his coach as he found the target on his return in Atletico Madrid's 3-0 victory at Real Valladolid.

Last Updated: 17/02/13 at 20:28

Diego Costa: Scored on his return to the Atletico side

Diego Costa: Scored on his return to the Atletico side

Diego Costa repaid the faith of his coach as he found the target on his return to the side in Atletico Madrid's morale-boosting 3-0 victory at Real Valladolid.

Brazilian forward Costa was suspended for Atletico's last two games, against both Rayo Vallecano in the Primera Division and Rubin Kazan in the Europa League, both of which ended in defeat.

Atletico boss Diego Simeone backed Costa to help his side snap their poor form on his return and he duly delivered, his well-taken second-half goal adding to Radamel Falcao's early opener.

Cristian Rodriguez added a late third as Atletico won on the road for the first time since November 18 to close back to within 12 points of leaders Barcelona.

Second-placed Atletico had won just two of their last six games in all competitions heading into tonight's contest but never looked in any danger of ending with anything other than all three points as Valladolid turned in an abject display.

The hosts failed to muster a shot on target over the 90 minutes and they may yet be eternally grateful for the current 10-point gap they enjoy above the relegation zone if performances continue in a similar vein.

Atletico wasted little time in taking the lead, just 10 minutes on the clock when Falcao netted his 23rd of the season, although the Colombian was lucky to be given the benefit of the doubt in a close offside call.

Omar created the opening as Diego Godin latched on to his free-kick to fire an effort that Daniel Hernandez could only parry, and Falcao was in the right place to bundle the ball home.

Atletico were good value for their lead and Costa might have made it 2-0 at the break but his lobbed effort was saved by Hernandez.

Costa did make it two just eight minutes into the second half, the forward played in by Jorge Koke's cute header and he finished low and hard beyond the goalkeeper.

As Valladolid's lamentable efforts up front continued, coach Miroslav Djukic threw on Angola striker Manucho to add a bit of muscle, but the change did little to affect the course of the match as Thibaut Courtois remained a spectator in the visitors' goal.

The visitors' victory was cemented in the final minute as a defensive blunder allowed Rodriguez to add a third, the substitute gleefully poking the ball home from close range after Antonio Rukavina's attempted chest back to his goalkeeper fell short.

Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

Y

ou make a lot of good points, but I still find myself instinctively against anything that makes it easier for Paul Ince to get managerial roles

stevenjameshyde
No Good Reason Not To Try The Rooney Rule

W

ow, that is so noble of you Rio. You're such an amazing guy, and so handsome too. Everyone wishes they were like the fantastic Rio Ferdinand.

Petulant_Radish
Rio: No grudge with 'gent' Moyes

T

errible night all round. This was a team there for the taking yet I fail to recall their 'keeper making a notable save. Sterling decided to have his worst game ever, Coutinho only provided about two good passes all game and Balotelli continues to frustrate. The less said about the set piece defending the better. Daniel Sturridge cannot came back soon enough. The lack of a real threat in the final third is so surprising, no killer pass, not testing...

jegz1uk
A Worrying Trend Of Liverpool Lethargy

Footer 365

Transfer news: Barcelona's Dani Alves hints at move to Premier League next summer

Brazil defender Dani Alves says this is his last season at Barcelona as he will move to the Premier League next summer.

Champions League: Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger confident Danny Welbeck's finishing will only get better

Arsene Wenger says hat-trick hero Danny Welbeck showed the "instinct of a goalscorer" in Arsenal's win over Galatasaray.

European Qualifiers: Daniel Sturridge won't be in England squad, says Brendan Rodgers

Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers says Roy Hodgson has agreed to leave Daniel Sturridge out of his England squad.

Mail Box

Danny, Champion Of Arsenal's World

It's a Mailbox filled with Liverpool glumness, but happiness surrounding Danny, champion of Arsenal's world. Plus, can someone try and teach Balotelli the offside rule?

It Was Better When City Were Rubbish

'I think I preferred it when we were s**t' says one City fan in the afternoon mailbox. There's a decent chat about the empty seats plus views on Liverpool and Roma...

© 2014 British Sky Broadcasting Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media property