Milan (AFP) – Atletico Madrid coach Diego Simeone lamented that losing a second Champions League final in three years was a “failure”, after seeing his side fall short against Real Madrid in a penalty shoot-out in Milan on Saturday.
The 46-year-old Argentine also appeared to hint at a possible exit from the Vicente Calderon in the aftermath of the match, which Real won 5-3 on penalties after a 1-1 draw.
“Do I have to continue with Atletico or is it the end of a cycle? I have to think about that,” Simeone mysteriously said.
Simeone’s side were beaten by Real after extra time in Lisbon in 2014, and they pushed their city rivals even further but to no avail at the San Siro.
Captain Sergio Ramos, as he did with a late equaliser two years ago, scored for Real, but Atletico hit back through substitute Yannick Carrasco despite a missed penalty from Antoine Griezmann.
But Cristiano Ronaldo struck the winning spot-kick after Juanfran’s effort had come back off the post.
“It puts a lot of years on you,” said Simeone.
“Congratulations to Real Madrid -– once again they were superior to us, this time at penalties.
“We started the game badly, then we got ourselves organised from the 20th minute. In the second half we could have equalised very quickly but our intention was clear.
“What really hurts me is to see the hurt of the people who’ve paid to come here -– I feel a bit responsible that I wasn’t able to give them what they wanted. That’s what really hurts.
“I feel responsible for the fans who have bought their tickets.”
Atletico have still never lifted the European Cup, also losing the 1974 final to Bayern Munich in a replay.