GUIJUELO-ATLÉTICO | SIMEONE

Simeone: "Gaitán? Players need to look for what the team needs"

Simeone, who has announced his squad for tomorrow's Cup tie, added: "All footballers need playing time and it's for the coach to select the ones who he thinks will respond".

Diego Simeone announced his 16-man squad for tomorrow's Copa del Rey tie against Guijuelo in which there was no Fernando Torres, or Filipe Luis but places were given to B team players: Rober, Caio, Juan Moreno, Keidi and Alberto.

Chapecoense tragedy

It's difficult to talk about football on a day like today...
First of all, I would like to dedicate a few words to the people of Chapecoense. I am with the Chapecoense family and all of the people who are involved at the club in their grief. Pain and sadness... life can spring situations like this which no one expects. And now we feeling for those who have perished or lost somebody in this tragedy, especially those of us who travel constantly and who are involved in football. I am very, very saddened by the situation.

Cup campaign

Atleti's Copa del Rey campaign starts tomorrow. How has the team been preparing?
With a lot of excitement. Historically, this is an attractive and much-loved competition for our club. And we hope to start this edition off by giving our best.

Are these 4th Round ties, when the big teams usually meet a theoretically weaker rival, a good exam for the players who don't get to play so much?
Playing time is playing time, regardless of the match you are playing. I don't give any of my players a technical exam - I don't judge them on that because all of them play well. What I do evaluate is their attitude, their capacity to work hard for the team, their integration into the team, who they respeond to what I ask of them and all of that is what you will see in any game whether it's the Copa del Rey, the league or any other competition. Those are the things which every coach hopes to see because I know that all of them play well.

Is it more difficult to motivate the team against teams who, on paper, are much weaker?
No I don't think so, because the only additions to the squad have been Vrsaljko, Gameiro and Gaitán  - the majority of the rest have spent a long time knowing what it means to play a football match for Atlético.

Simeone in this evening's training session in Majadahonda

It's the final year of the Calderón and the final could be played there - does that mean more pressure on Atleti in the Cup?
To be honest with you, no it doesn't because we always play to get the best possible outcome. There's no need to add a nice excuse into it. We will be playing with a  competitive team in every game.

What do you know about Guijuelo?
They recently changed their coach, but the team still has traces of his influence. They like to go forward using both wings and under the new coach, they are trying to close down spaces. We'll be up against a rival who are very excited by this tie.

What's the matter with Gaitán?
He's a very important player who will find his best form over the course of the season; all footballers need minutes and the coach must select the ones who he thinks will respond. As a consequence of that, the players have to search for what the team needs, not what they need individually.

Atlético squad:

Moyà, Moreira; Savic, Vrsaljko, Lucas, Giménez, Alberto Rodríguez; Saúl, Carrasco, Thomas, Gaitán, Juan Moreno, Keidi, Caio Henrique, Correa, Rober