Antoine Griezmann, Luciano Vietto wasteful for Atletico Madrid at PSV
Once again an inept attacking display from Atletico Madrid saw them held to a second consecutive 0-0 draw on Wednesday away to 10-man PSV in their Champions League last 16 first leg tie.
It was, without doubt, a game they really should have won. From the off it was Diego Simeone's men who set the tempo and should have scored twice in the opening 20 minutes, however both Luciano Vietto and Antoine Griezmann fluffed their lines one-on-one with PSV goalkeeper Jeroen Zoet.
After the break it was more of the same, with Diego Godin seeing a header ruled out for a foul before Gaston Pereiro was given his marching orders.
Los Colchoneros should have pushed on for a winner against 10 men, but their lack of a goalscorer cost them what would have been a precious away goal in Eindhoven. Now they must try and magic a goal from somewhere, in addition to not conceding at the Vicente Calderon in three weeks' time to make it through to the quarter finals.
The positive they can take is that the Dutch champions did not pose any sort of threat, so all they need to focus on is finding a way to actually score, which is proving difficult as of late.
Player ratings (1-10; 10=best. Players introduced after 70 minutes get no rating):
GK Jan Oblak, 6 -- Produced a good save from close range from a rare PSV attack in the first period, but apart from that was completely untroubled as he kept yet another clean sheet.
DF Juanfran, 7 -- Dealt well with what defensive duties he had. Spent the second half camped inside the PSV half in attack and was a thorn in the home side's back line, consistently sending in crosses that to any sort of in-form striker would have been meat and drink.
DF Diego Godin, 7 -- Did not have much to do in defence but looked neat on the ball and helped launch counters. Was a threat at the other end from set pieces and saw a goal disallowed correctly for climbing.
DF Stefan Savic, 5 -- Favoured to Jose Maria Gimenez but did not do too much to instil confidence in the decision. Was booked early on for a brainless foul and beaten a couple of times in the build-up to PSV's one sight of goal. Was rarely troubled apart from that.
DF Filipe Luis, 5 -- All smoke and no fire. Looked leggy in possession and both his crossing and link-up play was not up to scratch, not for the first time this season.
MF Saul Niguez, 6 -- The most defensive-minded of the midfield quartet, Saul was the best of a bang-average bunch. Looked to get his side up out of mediocrity, however his importance to the team is such that Simeone pulled him off with 15 minutes to go with one eye on the Madrid derby this weekend.
MF Koke, 5 -- A tale of two halves. Looked decent in the first as he almost lobbed the keeper and fed Griezmann for a one-on-one. However, after the break, he was wayward, almost scoring an own goal with a skewed clearance while all his corners and long passes failed to reach their targets. His struggle for form goes on.
MF Gabi, 6 -- Solid and unspectacular from the skipper. Produced a wonderful, inch-perfect ball for Vietto over the top early on that the Argentine contrived to miss. Gabi later tested the home side's stopper from distance in the second period. His set pieces were much more threatening than Koke's, too.
MF Oliver Torres, 5 -- Largely anonymous and Simeone will perhaps rue the fact he did not give Angel Correa the nod ahead of him.
FW Antoine Griezmann, 4 -- The Frenchman's form is starting to become a worry and his lack of product in big games is frightening. While it should not be the case, the side depends heavily on Griezmann, and when he does not fire, Los Colchoneros do not look like scoring. Wednesday night was case in point. Only has one goal in his last eight games in all competitions and lacked conviction when put through by Koke when he should have scored.
FW Luciano Vietto, 4 -- Awful. Made a nice run and latched onto Gabi's ball in the opening two minutes but did not show enough desire to finish the ball in a 50-50 challenge with the goalkeeper and his weak shot was cleared by a covering defender. After that he contributed next to nothing and every second touch seemed to be a tackle as his first deserted him. Subbed before the hour and is incredibly fortunate that the only other man at the club who plays in his position is the one who replaced him, Fernando Torres.
Fernando Torres, 5 -- Fared little better after replacing Vietto in the 61st minute. Spooned over a volley from close range before seeing a shot deflected over.
Angel Correa, NR --On for Saul in the 74th minute. Was a livewire in the quarter of an hour afforded to him. Showed good work to win ball back and create a chance for Torres. He then saw a shot blocked by a defender's face in the final stages. Must surely have a chance now to start up top given the ineptitude of Vietto and Torres. Looks like one of the few players in this squad capable of finding the back of the net.
Joseph Walker covers Atletico Madrid for ESPN FC. Twitter: @Joe_in_espana.