3 things we learned from Atletico Madrid's 2-1 victory over Borussia Dortmund

  • Atletico Madrid will take 2-1 lead into second leg of quarter-final tie
  • Antoine Griezmann starred for the hosts on Wednesday night
  • Resilient Dortmund are still in the tie following late goal
Atletico Madrid were in an irresistible mood on Wednesday night
Atletico Madrid were in an irresistible mood on Wednesday night / Diego Souto/GettyImages

Atletico Madrid will take a 2-1 lead into next week's Champions League quarter-final second leg away to Borussia Dortmund.

Placed on the 'right' side of the draw, both teams must regard this as a huge opportunity to reach the showpiece event at Wembley. Atleti have twice been downed in the final under Diego Simeone's tutelage, while one-time winners Dortmund have struggled to assert themselves in this competition since they were beaten finalists in 2013.

The signs were initially ominous for the visitors as an irresistible Atleti produced a superb first-half display and took a 2-0 lead, but a resilient second-half showing means BVB will feel it's all to play for going into the second leg.

Here are some of the things we learned from Wednesday night's game.

1. The genius of Antoine Griezmann

Antoine Griezmann
A joy to watch / Angel Martinez/GettyImages

Edin Terzic certainly has a pragmatic streak in him, and he surely would've emphasised the need for Dortmund to tame Antoine Griezmann at the Estadio Metropolitano.

By stopping Griez, you shun Atleti.

Instead, the canny Frenchman walked all over the visitors in the first half, leading the charge as the hosts took a 2-0 lead. Griezmann's movement was far too slick for veteran Mats Hummels and Emre Can at the base of midfield, with Atleti accessing their talisman whenever they wanted.

He combined superbly with flying wing-back Samuel Lino throughout, teeing up the Brazilian's goal with a genius scoop to bypass Julian Ryerson. Griezmann's influence was reduced somewhat after the restart as Atleti dug in, but he should've recorded another assist for Lino from a perfectly directed set-piece.

2. Dortmund's defending a far cry from Bayern Munich shutout

Antoine Griezmann, Mats Hummels
Dortmund were the masters of their own downfall in Madrid / Angel Martinez/GettyImages

Dortmund have been plagued by unpredictability and woeful inconsistency this season.

Just ten days ago, Terzic's side produced an outstanding defensive display to shut out Bayern Munich and record their first victory at the Allianz Arena in almost a decade. On Wednesday night, they were the masters of their own downfall.

Terzic will feel that both goals surrendered were avoidable. Ian Maatsen's lax touch inside laid it on a plate for Rodrigo De Paul to score the opener before a miscommunication between the centre-backs kick-started the sequence which led to Atleti's second.

They defended the transition pretty well after the restart, although Gregor Kobel was forced to make a tremendous save to deny Lino, while Hummels, who looked every bit of his 35 years, almost handed Angel Correa a gilt-edged opening late on.

3. Resilient Dortmund are still in this tie

Sebastien Haller
Sebastien Haller halved Dortmund's deficit on the night / Quality Sport Images/GettyImages

A mauling would've been feared when Atleti went 2-0 up after 32 minutes. Suffocated by the hosts' pressure, it looked like BVB would succumb in a tough environment.

However, Terzic's side are made of strong stuff. They've already won at St James' Park and San Siro this season, and they'll feel they've earned a pretty good result in Madrid. The tie hasn't got away from them, even if there's work to do.

Perhaps fatigued by the first-half efforts, Atleti allowed Dortmund onto them in the second half and Terzic's subs undoubtedly made the difference. Julian Brandt offered superior quality when operating between the lines, Jamie Bynoe-Gittens produced an excellent cameo, and Haller came off the bench to score.

And while they surrendered chances at the other end after halving the deficit, Bynoe-Gittens and Brandt both hit the woodwork late on.

Given Atleti's struggles on the road, this tie is far from over. Signal-Iduna Park will be rocking next Tuesday.