Atletico’s Mandzukic breaks nose vs. Olympiakos, set to have surgery
Atletico Madrid says striker Mario Mandzukic broke his nose during Tuesday’s 3-2 loss at Olympiakos in the Champions League.
The Spanish club said that the Croatian international will have surgery on this nose on Thursday.
Mandzukic was elbowed in the face by Olympiakos midfielder Pajtim Kasami in the opening minutes of the match. After being attended by the team’s medical staff, he returned to the field, heading in Atletico’s first goal before halftime.
Mandzukic has scored six goals in all competitions since his offseason move to Atletico from Bayern Munich.
Atletico Madrid boss Diego Simeone has admitted defeat in their Champions League opener at Olympiakos has piled the pressure on his side ahead of their next fixture against Juventus. Last season’s beaten finalists began their campaign with a 3-2 loss at Karaiskakis Stadium and Simeone knows they cannot afford another setback when they host Juventus, who beat Malmo in the other Group A encounter, next month.
The Argentinian told the club’s official website: "Olympiacos start from a very strong position to qualify and it makes us more uncomfortable to play at home against Juventus, who also started from a good position."
While Simeone was happy with his team’s performance, he was left to rue several wasted chances.
The Argentinian said on the club’s official website: "I think the team attacked well, they had very clear chances in the first half, but they were hard on the attack. Olympiakos were precise when scoring and we weren’t with the chances we had."
FOXSoccer.com’s newswire services contributed to this report.