Club Atlético de Madrid are through to their first UEFA Champions League final after a stunning victory at Chelsea FC set up an enticing showdown with city rivals Real Madrid CF in Lisbon on 24 May.
Having gone behind as their former pin-up boy Fernando Torres struck first, Diego Simeone's side fought back immediately with a crucial away goal from Adrián López and then put the tie out of reach in the second half. Diego Costa's penalty and Arda Turan's strike gave José Mourinho his fourth successive failure at this stage and Chelsea a fifth defeat in seven semi-finals since 2004.
Deprived of Frank Lampard and John Obi Mikel through suspension, Mourinho selected three full-backs and deployed César Azpilicueta in an unfamiliar midfield role ahead of Branislav Ivanović down the right. If that encouraged a greater sense of adventure in Atlético they almost found instant reward for their enterprise.
Koke's corner was headed back out to him and a first-time ball off the side of his boot sailed over Mark Schwarzer and cannoned off the bar, the post and Gary Cahill before looping over. Chelsea tried to inject some composure into their play though the Spanish team were hustling them at every opportunity. Diego Costa twice muscled through and it required great powers of recovery from first Ashley Cole and then Cahill to deny him.
There was a smoothness to Atlético's combinations that augured well for the visitors though Chelsea are nothing if not spirited and Torres was looking particularly sprightly and motivated. It was the former Atlético No9 who broke the deadlock after Willian's wizardry set him free from two markers, enabling Azpilicueta to sweep the ball across. Torres declined to celebrate but was no doubt delighted with the deflection off Mario Suárez which put the ball out of the reach of Thibaut Courtois, the goalkeeper on loan from Chelsea.
It was the first goal the visitors had conceded in seven games and they trailed for only six minutes. Former Chelsea player Tiago played a diagonal pass to the far post which Juanfran kept alive. Both John Terry and Cole were unable to clear and Adrián took full advantage.
The value of the away goal was underlined as Atlético displayed renewed belief after the restart, Schwarzer palming away Arda's strong effort. The visitors fancied their chances of a second and it arrived from the penalty spot after Samuel Eto'o, on the field for just six minutes, fouled Costa. The forward took some time attending to the penalty spot – and was booked for his trouble – before smashing the ball high into the net.
David Luiz sent a header against the upright at the other end but when Juanfran reprised his earlier assist, Arda first headed against the bar before tucking away the rebound. Game, set and match as Atlético celebrated a first European Champion Clubs' Cup final for 40 years.
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