On May 9, 2012, Atlético de Madrid won the Europa League by beating Athletic Club de Bilbao in the final. This match was Simeone’s first title as coach of the Red and White team. Since then he has won six more trophies. Of the current team, only Koke was already there at the time.

Atlético de Madrid, due to restrictions due to the pandemic, will have to play at home against Chelsea in the Champions League at the National Arena in Bucharest. A stadium that marked the start of a triumphant journey for Cholo at the helm of the red and white team.

Simeone landed in the Spanish capital during the 2011-2012 season and it wasn’t long before he claimed his first title on the bench. On May 9, 2012, after beating Athletic Club 3-0 in the final (double from Falcao and goal from Diego), the Colchoneros lifted the Europa League and allowed the Argentine to unlock his counter as a coach of the team.

Since then, the story is known. Since then, 6 titles in total have been won by the Madrilenians. One Liga (2013-14), one King’s Cup (2012-13), one Spanish Super Cup (2014-15), one Europa League (2017-18) and two European Super Cups (2012-13 and 2018- 19).

Cholo’s men trained on the grounds of the National Arena on Monday. The trainer and Koke, the only survivor of that first trophy, must have felt a sort of “déjà vu” when remembering how it all started.

The modern history of Atlético could not be understood without Bucharest. This Tuesday, Atlético will try to transform it back into a talisman to start a new path towards its first Champions League, which would be the icing on the cake that Cholo began to prepare 9 years ago.