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2018/2019 Spanish Primera División
  • Antoine Griezmann (63')

Antoine Griezmann scores as Atletico Madrid beat Rayo Vallecano

MADRID -- Antoine Griezmann's second-half strike earned Atletico Madrid a first win of the Liga season on Saturday as they defeated local rivals Rayo Vallecano 1-0.

Before the Frenchman's intervention on the hour it had been a frustrating evening for Diego Simeone's side, who enjoyed the lion's share of possession but struggled to break down their resolute visitors.

That all changed in the 63rd minute when Griezmann turned in Stefan Savic's header from close range following a corner.

Angel Correa had Atletico's best opportunity in the first half, but Rayo keeper Alberto Garcia did well to keep the Argentine's effort out.

Shortly afterwards, the Wanda Metropolitano got its first taste of VAR as Diego Costa's screams for handball in the penalty area were turned down by referee Jose Luis Gonzalez Gonzalez, whose decision was vindicated by video replays as the game continued.

"We weren't great," France forward Griezmann said. "I'm not sure if we felt it in our legs or what, but we'll continue to improve."

He added: "We're going to try and win all our games and we'll see where it can take us. It's great to be here and hopefully I can take the club to the highest I can."

Atletico will be sweating on the fitness of fullback Juanfran, who hobbled off after half an hour with what the club described as a muscle problem.

Spanish Primera División Standings

POS Team GP GD PTS
1 Barcelona 20 +35 46
2 Atletico Madrid 20 +17 41
3 Real Madrid 20 +6 36
4 Sevilla FC 20 +9 33
5 Alavés 20 -1 32
6 Getafe 20 +9 31
7 Real Betis 20 0 29
8 Real Sociedad 20 +1 26
9 Valencia 20 +1 26
10 Levante 20 -3 26
11 Eibar 20 -4 25
12 Girona 20 -3 24
13 Espanyol 20 -9 24
14 Athletic Bilbao 20 -5 23
15 Leganes 20 -6 22
16 Real Valladolid 20 -6 22
17 Celta Vigo 20 -2 21
18 Rayo Vallecano 20 -12 20
19 Villarreal 20 -5 18
20 Huesca 20 -22 11