Atletico thank Liverpool fans

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Atletico Madrid have praised Liverpool fans following the 1-1 draw at the Vicente Calderon Stadium on Wednesday night, when both sets of fans created a brilliant, friendly atmosphere inside and outside the ground.

Fans shared drinks and traded scarves before and after the game in Madrid and many Atletico fans remained inside the ground after full time to join in the singing of songs with Liverpool fans.

Liverpool fans were even greeted by waiting Atletico fans outside the stadium who, along with some police, applauded the travelling Kop.

Atletico’s official website wrote on Friday:

The two teams drew on the pitch, but the two groups of fans won. And by a wide margin. No arguments about that. The Atlético de Madrid and Liverpool supporters set a perfect example and for this reason the Atleti organization would like to thank both sets of fans for their exquisite sportsmanship.

And finishes their report saying:

The referee blew the final whistle, but undoubtedly the best gesture of the day was yet to come. The Liverpool supporters were held back in the stands until the vicinity of the stadium was clear. But a group of Atlético fans waited for the Brits to be let out with the best of intentions. This group spontaneously formed a tunnel and the Liverpool supporters were applauded as they left the Vicente Calderón. It was an unforgettable moment. The second half of this friendly rivalry will be played at Anfield in two weeks time and surely it will be even better’¦

The applause Steven Gerrard received from the home fans was also noted when he was substituted.

The Telegraph on Thursday wrote:

Fears over crowd trouble following the incidents at Atletico’s last Champions League game against Olympique Marseille proved unfounded on a night when fans of both clubs sang together, drank together and, above all, joined forces to praise Fernando Torres, an idol at the Calderon and on the Kop, sadly absent.

There was no trouble and no racist chanting here, no baton charges or flares, just a wall of noise from fans determined to show that this stadium can produce a fantastic atmosphere. A generous one with the visitors, too.

And The Guardian praised:

Such controversy, however, could not sour the atmosphere on a night when fears about crowd trouble proved unfounded. The absence of Torres wrested much of the magic from the match, as did the cold wind that whipped through the arena, but the fans of both sides were still determined to enjoy the occasion together. When the two sides emerged from the tunnel Spanish flags filled the south stand, but red and yellow was also on display among the Liverpool fans. Drinks, songs and even sandwiches were shared in the north end of the stadium.

Before the match, supporters from both clubs had met on the Toledo Bridge and made their way to the ground together. At Casa Angel, and down along Melancholic’s Way on the walk to the stadium, fans joined forces in renditions of Y Viva España and, of course, gloried in the absent Torres, the man around whom this tie had been built, until his injury. Together they chanted his name, and that of Luis García at the final whistle. When Gerrard was withdrawn, he was given a generous ovation by the home fans.

Liverpool fans who were in Madrid now look forward to showing the same hospitality when the Spaniards arrive in Liverpool in two weeks.