Atletico Madrid's revamped team got off to a winning start in the Spanish league on Sunday, edging Getafe 1-0 with a first-half goal by Alvaro Morata.

By Associated Press
August 18, 2019

MADRID — Atletico Madrid's revamped team got off to a winning start in the Spanish league on Sunday, edging Getafe 1-0 with a first-half goal by Alvaro Morata.

The striker scored with a header off a well-placed cross by right back Kieran Trippier, one of the many new players in an Atletico squad that was without Antoine Griezmann for the first time in five seasons.

Griezmann's replacement, young Portuguese star Joao Felix, had a decent performance but was substituted with an apparent leg injury midway through the second half.

Both teams finished the match with 10 men at Wanda Metropolitano Stadium. Getafe striker Jorge Molina was shown a straight red card in the 38th for a foul from behind on Atletico midfielder Thomas Partey. Less than five minutes later, Renan Lodi—another newcomer for Atletico—was sent off with a second yellow for elbowing an opponent while jumping for a header.

Molina was initially shown a yellow card but the referee determined after video review that he deserved a red.

Getafe nearly pulled off an equalizer a few minutes from the end but Angel Rodriguez's long-range shot hit the crossbar.

Morata got on the board with a header in the 23rd after the assist from Trippier, who played well in his first competitive game with Atletico since joining from Tottenham.

Felix, the 19-year-old forward signed from Benfica for more than 120 million euros ($133 million), showed a glimpse of his talent with a run that led to a penalty kick early in the second half. Morata missed a chance to increase Atletico's lead when his shot from the spot was saved by goalkeeper David Soria.

In addition to losing Griezmann, whose move cost rival Barcelona 120 million euros in the offseason, Diego Simeone's team also lost veterans Diego Godin, Filipe Luis and Juanfran Torres.

New signings Mario Hermoso and Marcos Llorente came off the bench to make the official debuts.

Striker Diego Costa didn't play because of a muscle injury.

On Saturday, Real Madrid opened with a 3-1 win at Celta Vigo.

Two-time defending league champion Barcelona lost 1-0 at Athletic Bilbao on Friday.

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