Spain coach Vicente del Bosque would like to see a good match when Real Madrid entertain Atletico Madrid this weekend, who he believes are a strong side under Diego Simeone.
Los Colchoneros are enjoying a great season and are currently second in the Primera Division, three points behind leaders Barcelona and an impressive eight points ahead of their cross-town rivals.
Although Atleti have a miserable record against los Blancos, Del Bosque hopes that the outcome of the match will not be determined early on as it has often been in the past.
“Atletico Madrid under Simeone are a very good team. I hope it will be a good match between them and Real Madrid,” the Salamanca-native was quoted by Marca.
“I hope that the game will not be resolved in the opening stages like it has been in previous years.
“Atletico have had their ups and downs over the years. But, now with Simeone that are more consistent.”
Del Bosque was speaking before travelling to Brazil where the final shortlists for the Ballon D’Or were made and where he will attend the draw for next year’s Confederations Cup this Saturday.
Talking of the annual award and next year’s warm-up competition ahead of the 2014 World Cup, Del Bosque revealed which fellow coaches he voted for, denied that Brazil are no longer the force they used to be while insisting that Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi could play together.
“They [Ronaldo and Messi] for sure could play in the same team, just like all good players,” he continued.
“As for my votes, I elected Roberto Di Matteo who won the Champions League, Cesare Prandelli who led Italy to the final of Euro 2012 and Pep Guardiola who I believe is an important figure within football.
“Brazil do not cease to be Brazil. They, as hosts, have fantastic players still.”