Real Madrid and Atlético Madrid failed to produce any fireworks in a lackluster derby at the Wanda Metropolitano on Saturday, sharing a 0-0 draw that allowed Barcelona to move closer to the top in the Spanish league.
Champions Barcelona shrugged off the absence of Lionel Messi to win 2-0 at Getafe and close within two points of leader Real Madrid.
“It was a derby in which neither team did enough to win,” Atlético goalkeeper Jan Oblak said. “No team deserved to lose either, so it was a fair result. These matches are complicated. You want to win, but at the same time you also don’t want to lose. You can’t risk too much.”
Oblak was crucial in keeping the scores level, making an outstanding reflex save from Karim Benzema’s 75th-minute header.
Real Madrid stayed one point ahead of Atlético and promoted Granada, which defeated Leganés 1-0 to register a fourth win in seven matches. Real Sociedad can take the lead on Sunday if it wins at eighth-place Sevilla.
“It was important to keep a clean sheet again,” Real Madrid coach Zinedine Zidane said. “We played very well defensively. In attack we could have done more, but we are working on it, we want to keep improving offensively.”
Atlético’s best opportunity came less than 10 minutes into the match when teenage forward João Félix went close following a counterattack.
Félix went off in the second half, drawing jeers from the crowd toward coach Diego Simeone.
Eden Hazard had a quiet game alongside Benzema and Gareth Bale in the visiting attack, and Luka Modric couldn’t do much either when he came off the bench in the second half.
The result extended Atlético’s four-year winless streak at home against Real Madrid in the league.
Atlético has won only one of its last 19 home games against Real Madrid in the league, with the sole victory coming in February 2015. Real Madrid’s 3-1 victory at the Wanda last season was Atlético’s only defeat in its last 24 home games in the league.
It was the first match between the rivals since Atlético stunned Real Madrid 7-3 in a friendly in the United States in July.
Real Madrid stays top after 0-0 derby draw with Atlético