- Atletico Madrid manager Diego Simeone watched his team win the Europa League from the stands because he was serving a touchline ban.
- UEFA gave Simeone the ban for his conduct with an official during the first leg of Atletico’s Europa League semi-final matchup with Arsenal.
- Simeone will also have to serve the rest of his ban at the start of Atletico’s Champions League campaign next season.
Atletico Madrid defeated Olympique de Marseille in the Europa League final in Lyon on Wednesday, and they did so despite the club’s manager Diego Simeone watching from the stands because he is in the middle of serving a touchline ban in UEFA.
Simeone was given a four-game touchline ban from UEF after angrily confronting an official during the first leg of Atletico’s Europa League semi-final matchup against Arsenal. He was formally charged with insulting a match official and improper conduct, per ESPN.
Despite the ban, a stellar performance from Atletico star Antoine Griezmann, who scored two of Atletico’s three goals, along with an unfortunate injury to Marseille star Dimitri Payet, was enough for Atletico to win the matchup.
Atletico is set to return to the Champions League next season, but Simeone will still have to serve the final two games of his ban when the club kicks off its European campaign next season in the Champions League group stage.
Since taking over the club in 2011, Simeone has built Atletico Madrid into a dominant force in European club soccer and cemented himself as one of the game’s top managers, and this latest Europea League victory is just one of many impressive results Atletico has experienced under him. Most notably, Simeone guided Atletico to a La Liga title in 2014 and made the finals of the UEFA Champions League in 2014 and 2016, both of which resulted in losses to the club’s cross-town rival Real Madrid.
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