Kevin Gameiro contributed a hat-trick to ensure Atletico Madrid’s victory over Sporting Gijon on Saturday. The result sees Atletico continue their pursuit of finishing the season in the top four in La Liga.
The hat-trick was all the more remarkable as Gameiro came on as a substitute, scoring the three goals in the space of five minutes (80, 81, 85) to give his team the win. This also provided Gameiro with the record of “fastest hat-trick in LaLiga” since Bebeto’s in 1995.
Atletico’s manager, Diego Simeone, had warned against the threat posed by Sporting Gijon before the match. His predictions seemed to come true, with Sporting enjoying the better chances in the first half. The main goal threat came through loan signing Lacina Traore.
Yannick Carrasco scored shortly after the beginning of the second half for Atletico. However, Sporting reacted quickly and drew level on 49 minutes through Álvarez. The Sporting player came close to doubling his tally soon after, but goalkeeper Miguel Angel Moya was on call to stop the shot.
Atletico Madrid took control of the game only within the last minutes. Antoine Griezmann had a goal ruled out by an offside decision. He then contributed an assist for substitute Gameiro’s strike that put the Madrid side ahead. Gameiro then showcased his clinical finishing with two more goals. The hat-trick helped end a goal drought that had seen the striker not score since November of last year.
With this win Atletico moves one point close of third-place Sevilla. The objective of finishing among the first four teams of La Liga is within their reach. Confidence will also be high when Atletico take on Bayer Leverkusen on Tuesday in the Champions League.
Elsewhere, Sporting remains 18th in the league with the team hoping they can avoid relegation come the end of the season. They now have 16 points, with two points below Leganes and the relegation line.
Some of the key game stats include: :
– In the first half Sporting Gijon had seven shots on goal, their highest total in LaLiga this season.– Atletico Madrid have conceded 19 goals in LaLiga this season. The entire last campaign they conceded 18 goals.– Atletico have not been able to keep a clean sheet at El Molinon since 1996.– This was Gameiro’s first hat-trick for Atletico. Previously, he had scored a hat-trick on two occasions in LaLiga and five times in his entire career.– Gameiro’s hat-trick (four minutes and 43 seconds) is the fastest hat-trick in LaLiga since Bebeto’s in 1995, in a match against Albacete.– Kevin Gameiro’s hat trick is the first time that a substitute scores three times for Atletico since playing in the championship.