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Roma need the Champions League

By ESPN Staff

Two-goal Maxi realistic as Atletico end Sevilla run

MADRID, Sept 25 (Reuters) - Argentina forward Maxi Rodriguez refused to be carried away by Atletico Madrid's dramatic late win over Sevilla in the Primera Liga.

The UEFA Cup holders came into Sunday's game on the back of a 12-match winning run in all competitions that started in April and were on their way to their 13th after Brazilian Renato put them ahead just before the break.

But red cards for centre-backs Javi Navarro and Julien Escude in the second half swung the game Atletico's way and Maxi struck twice in the last six minutes to earn them a barely merited win.

The most important thing was the points but I am delighted to have scored because it gives me confidence, Maxi said.

We didn't play very well in the first half and managed to win more through passion than through good football.

The victory puts Atletico fifth in the table with nine points from a possible 12, level with Sevilla who have a superior goal difference, and one adrift of the leading trio of Barcelona, Real Madrid and Valencia.

With the city derby against Real Madrid looming next Sunday, Maxi remained cautious about his side's chances in the Bernabeu.

Everyone knows how important this game is but we must remain prudent, and hope that this time it is our turn, he said.

Atletico have not beaten arch rivals Real since a 3-1 win in the Bernabeu in October 1999.