the numbers of Atlético-MG in the current season are impressive. In 50 matches played, the Minas Gerais team has 35 wins, 9 draws and only 6 losses. In all, Alvinegro scored 85 goals and conceded 28. Exhibiting excellence in all competitions, Galo may have the best season of its 113 years of life. However, as “scalded rooster is also afraid of cold water”, fans prefer to wait for at least one of the cups in dispute to win the party.
Minas Gerais champion, the team led by Cuca has the real possibility of winning three major titles in 2021: liberators, Brazil Cup and Brazilian Championship.
In the most important club tournament in South America, Atlético-MG ended the first phase with the best overall campaign and, in the eighth and fourth quarters, dispatched the giants Boca Juniors and River Plate, both from Argentina. Now, in the semifinals, he will face Palmeiras, current champion.
In the Copa do Brasil, the team is also a semi-finalist. Leaving behind Remo, Bahia and Fluminense, Galo faces Fortaleza with a little more than R$ 15 million guaranteed in cash and, by the cast, with favoritism over Leão do Pici.
In the Brazilian Championship, a competition which has not won since 1971, the team of Hulk, Diego Costa and company tries to prevent the fast to complete 50 years. With 42 points conquered, they have a good advantage in the lead over vice-leader Palmeiras (seven points), although Flamengo still emerges as a threat —Rubro-Negro is now eight points behind, but with two games in hand.
Comparison with magic years
If we compare the performance of Atlético-MG in 2021 with the years in which they raised the cups for the Libertadores and Copa do Brasil, it is easy to see that the club has never been so close to being champion in major competitions in the same season.
In 2013, when it conquered America for the first time, the team ended up being eliminated in the round of 16 of the national tournament and ended the Brasileirão in the eighth position.
In 2014, when he made the Olympic comeback in the Copa do Brasil, after defeating his rival cruise in the final, the team finished the Brasileirão in fifth place, seeing Raposa take the trophy. In Libertadores, Levir Culpi’s team ended up being eliminated by Atlético Nacional, from Colombia, in the round of 16.
However, despite being the highlight of the season, Alvinegro keeps its feet on the ground. During the press conference held after the 1-0 victory over Tricolor das Laranjeiras, which guaranteed a place in the semifinals of the Copa do Brasil, Cuca made it clear that the road to follow is still long.
“We’re in a Libertadores semifinal, a Brazil Cup, we’ve already won the Mineiro and we’re leading the Brazilian. That doesn’t mean anything, just that the Mineiro has already won. for ahead anything can happen. I’ve talked to them a lot about this; you can win three titles, win two or not win at all. So, we have to be very careful, because success and failure, the distance is very short. If there are two or three stumbling blocks, you (the press) will criticize,” said the coach.
“We are measuring forces with teams equal to ours. God only knows where we are going in the three competitions, but we have a lot of humility and feet on the ground,” he added.
Atlético-MG’s next challenge will be this Saturday (18th), when they face Sport-PE for the 21st round. It is worth remembering that Cuca’s men have one game in hand, as the match against the Guild was postponed due to the call-ups for the qualifiers.
For the duel against Pernambuco, the ball starts at 19:00 (GMT), at Mineirão.