Atletico Madrid players do not plan for a guard of honour for Real Madrid after they were confirmed title winners on Saturday.
Atleti have several reasons to avoid a gesture that has become a humiliation for the team doing it rather than a sign of respect for those receiving it. That is why almost the entire Atletico squad is against the idea.
“A guard of honour to Real Madrid? We congratulate them, but we have a lot of respect for our fans,” said Jose Maria Gimenez at the end of Atleti’s 2-0 loss away at Athletic Club, making it very clear where things are heading.
“As captain I’m one of those who doesn’t like to give or receive the guard of honour,” Jan Oblak declared. “But the club will decide and we’ll do whatever is necessary.”
The Atleti players will abide by the club’s decision on the matter, but in the offices of the Metropolitano they are well aware that a large portion of the fans are against the gesture to their neighbours on such an important occasion as the Madrid derby, as qualification for next season’s Champions League is still at stake.