Koke pleased with Atletico display against Barcelona, Messi

After holding Barcelona to a 1-1 draw, Atletico Madrid midfielder Koke was satisfied with his side's display.

Atletico Madrid contained Lionel Messi from scoring during the entire 90 minutes.   -  Getty Images

Atletico Madrid midfielder Koke praised his side for its performance and ability to contain Lionel Messi in a 1-1 draw against Barcelona.

Saul Niguez's first-half goal was cancelled out by Luis Suarez at the Wanda Metropolitano as Atletico ended Barca's perfect start to the LaLiga season on Saturday.

READ:  Messi 'tired' after recent heroics, says Valverde

After helping Diego Simeone's men keep Messi below his usual match-winning best, Koke said it was a team effort.

"We already know Messi, who has so much quality that he can score a goal at any time," he said.

"We have done everything possible to stop him... it's hard to stop a player like that but I think it's done by everyone."

The result saw Atletico remain unbeaten in the league this season, sitting third and six points behind Barca.

Koke said his team was still pushing to match Ernesto Valverde's side, as well as city rival Real.

"There are Madrid and Barcelona and then there is us," he said.

"We are fighting with them. I don't know if we will be at their level. We know that we have to work hard to be up there with them."

Support Sportstar


Dear Reader,

Support our journalism — where text and pictures intermingle so seamlessly — and help us scale up your experience as the world changes around us. Your contribution is vital to our brand of uninfluenced, boots-on-the-ground reportage that’s worth your while. Clickbait sensationalism is not for us, but editorial independence is — we owe it to you.

  Dugout videos