Doha: Atlético Madrid won the 2014 LFP - Aspire Challenge following a hugely dramatic penalty shoot-out victory over fellow Spanish team Villareal yesterday.
In the final game of the Under-15 tournament, late strikes from Atlético players Andy Escudero and Giovanni Navarro were enough to cancel out Villareal’s two early first-half goals.
Easily the match of the tournament, Villareal went ahead after just 13 minutes when defender Ruben Solis tripped and fouled Villareal forward Ivan Nunez inside the Atlético penalty area. Awarded a spot-kick, up-stepped Villareal’s Sergio Lozano who could then put away confidently his team’s first penalty of the tournament. With both sides playing excellent, attacking football, the second goal came from a set-piece on 35 minutes when Villareal captain Diego Gonzalez connected with a corner to head in his second goal of the tournament. To give Atlético their credit however, the Madrid players continued to battle and were awarded for their stages in the game’s final stages for their able to with a goal on 53 minutes following a strike from Giovanni Navarro. Then, with just a minute on the clock before full-time, midfielder Andy Escudero was able to equalise for Madrid with a superb volley from inside the Villareal box. The final then decided on penalties, Atlético could then lift the tournament trophy after beating Villareal in the shoot-out and return to Spain as the only team who maintained a 100% record in the competition.