Godin: Losing Madrid derby wouldn't kill Atletico title hopes

The Uruguayan defender is certain the Rojiblancos could catch the European champions in La Liga even if they lose this weekend and insists his team are not violent

Diego Godin does not think defeat to Real Madrid on Saturday would spell the end of Atletico Madrid’s hopes of defending their Liga championship.

If Sevilla are beaten by the European champions on Wednesday and Atletico subsequently lose in the derby, Diego Simeone’s men would be 10 points behind the Liga leaders with 16 games to go.

Atletico defender Godin is certain they can catch their rivals even if they lose at the Vicente Calderon and does not think their unbeaten streak of three wins and two draws against Carlo Ancelotti’s side since last year’s Champions League final defeat gives them an advantage.

“Losing the game is not saying goodbye to the title,” he told reporters on Wednesday.

“We aspire to win and gain some points off Real, reducing the gap. But losing will not change our goal. La Liga is very even and it is too early to pronounce any race as over.

“We are not the favourites this weekend. In derby games it does not matter who won the last game. Prior results mean nothing – it is 50/50.”

Godin also stressed that he is “fed up” of Atletico Madrid being portrayed as a violent team; the latest criticism about their attitude on the pitch coming after a feisty clash with Barcelona last month in their Copa del Rey quarter-final second leg.

Diego Simeone’s team finished with nine men, with Gabi and Mario Suarez red carded, while Arda Turan was incredibly fortunate not be sent off for appearing to throw his boot at a linesman as they were eliminated by Lionel Messi and his Catalan team-mates.

“Of course we are not violent,” the Uruguayan continued. “We are fed up of hearing this, we do not believe this is true. We don’t know where such a notion stems from, but it is removed from the truth.

“We compete and we have done it this way for years. Everything we have achieved recently has been done through hard graft, top effort and good work – we are intense, yes, but not violent.”

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