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Simeone labels Gimenez challenge 'act of heroism'

Diego Simeone dismissed claims nine-man Real Sociedad should have been given a late penalty in a controversial end to Atletico Madrid's 2-0 win at the Anoeta Stadium.

Atletico were leading 1-0 through a fine solo goal from Antoine Griezmann in injury time when defender Jose Maria Gimenez appeared to bring down Sociedad forward Jonathas.

But referee Ignacio Iglesias did not point to the spot and Atletico quickly launched a counter from which Yannick Ferreira Carrasco made sure of the points.

Iglesias' decision angered Sociedad coach David Moyes. Asked about the incident, Simeone said: "The truth is that from the bench we were far away from it. But I was told that he [Gimenez] hit the ball when he threw himself over in an act of heroism.

"The referee saw that he touched the ball and not the player. The [opposition] player was looking for contact in a heroic act by Gimenez."

Simeone's men are now fourth in La Liga, two points behind Real Madrid, Celta Vigo and Barcelona, who are all level on 18 points.

"Whenever you come to this stadium you know it's going to be a difficult game because Real are a very competitive side," Simeone added.

"When they're losing they find extra reserves of effort, especially against the big clubs, and they have an amazing emotional resilience. They can be very dangerous then.

"The truth is that during the second half we found it difficult to get out of our own half, although we weren't under any pressure in our area."