ATLÉTICO MADRID

Oblak battens down: one goal conceded in five games

Atlético Madrid have regained their defensive solidity in recent weeks, with only Sevilla able to breach the Slovenian keeper's goal.

Madrid
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Oblak battens down: one goal conceded in five games
PEPE ANDRES

A tough nut to crack

Atlético Madrid have regained their renowned defensive solidity in recent weeks, resulting in victories and points. Los Rojiblancos are currently giving very little away, and when they do Oblak is there to pick up the pieces. The Slovenian keeper has only let in one goal in the past five league games, against Valencia, Granada, Sevilla, Málaga and Real Sociedad. And to boot, Simeone's side have won all five of those games, bagging 15 points and moving up to third in the table. If Atlético wish to get anything from the Madrid derby (Saturday, 16:15 CET) they know their defence will be the key.

Oblak's season

Nevertheless, this season has been far from plain sailing for Atleti's shot stopper, particularly after the injury he picked up against Villarreal on 12 December. After being sidelined for two months, his return came on 26 February against Barcelona, where he conceded twice and Atlético slumped to defeat. Since that loss, however, Oblak has been a commanding presence between the red and white sticks, despite Moyá's competent performances in his absence. The Slovenian keeper is currently one of the best in Spain and Europe as he makes history: in 101 official games with Atlético, he has kept a clean sheet in 59 matches, conceding a total of 63 goals. In this LaLiga campaign, he has not been beaten in 16 games and has conceded 19 goals in total.   

A key component

At only 24, Oblak is under contract at Atlético until 30 June 2021, with a buy-out clause of 100 million euros, the same as Antoine Griezmann. The rojiblanco board is well aware that French striker an integral part of the club's potential success, but Oblak is fast becoming equally important, and the fact he is a big-game player has not gone unnoticed among Europe's elite.