​Atletico Madrid manager Diego Simeone insists his side are ready to meet Barcelona in the Champions League this week after closing the gap on them in La Liga to six points at the weekend.


According to ​Football Espana, the Argentinian was delighted with his side's 5-1 win over Real Betis and for the young players he introduced. Barca were dealt a home defeat by Real Madrid on Saturday night, as Karim Benzema and Cristiano Ronaldo struck late on to snatch a 2-1 win from Camp Nou.


Atleti are the next visitors to Barcelona on Tuesday night, but ahead of the game Simeone first reflected on his side's league performance at the weekend.

He said: “[Nacho Monsalve] did exactly how I think he’d do, he was very good and calm and strengthens us in the future.


“We’re pleased that a young lad debuted, and this is a wakeup call for the players in the academy. When [a youngster] trains with us, it’s for a reason and we’ll always see how they develop.


“We played a 4-3-1-2, we broke through [Dani] Ceballos and had depth in our play thanks to Torres and Griezmann. It’s not easy to play in this system and we did very well. At the end of the game, I saw hope and enthusiasm.


“I’ve always believed it’s important to excite the fans when they see the table in the newspapers every Monday, Tuesday or Thursday. The Copa del Rey and Champions League are very important, but the fans live for these episodes.


“The tournament which offers stability and is read about every day in the newspapers is the League. All matches against [Barca] are different and we’ll prepare for it in the best way possible.


“We must continue insisting [on results] and working hard so we can enter the last five [league] games with the hope of fighting Barca.”

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