Atletico Madrid were dealt a huge blow in their chase to retain the La Liga title last weekend when a frankly awful performance saw Diego Simeone's side lose 2-0 at Celta Vigo.
The Argentine was big enough to admit after the game that his selection, particularly in attack, had gone some way to seeing the home side spring one of the surprise results of the season.
The Rojiblancos followed Barcelona into Eduardo Berizzo's book of conquests this season. A shame for supporters of that club that results in between have been poor.
Not that it will both Atletico who now have a mountain to climb to claw their way back into title contention. At the time of writing, they are seven points behind Real Madrid and six behind Barca.
If we take head-to-head into account, then that's essentially worth an extra point to the Catalans.
Atletico do need to play Barca again of course, this time the penultimate, rather than last, game of the season. It could be pivotal again if results go for them in the meantime.
That does require Simeone's side to be taking maximum points from their fixtures themselves of course.
By mid-March, they will have also played Sevilla and Valencia. Other than Barca, those two fixtures are probably their toughest of the campaign.
Come through those unscathed and we can say that there is a chance, nothing more, that Atletico could come up on the rails and snatch an unlikely title triumph.
Lose either one of those and then it will be goodnight Vienna for the team from the Vicente Calderon.
Decent league form
Celta and Barca league results aside, the mattress makers have again fared well throughout the league campaign.
It's those more regular kind of performances that the manager will be looking for from his charges throughout the business end of the season.
Only three other defeats throughout the entire La Liga season speaks of a team in good form, albeit a healthy win ratio is peppered with the odd defeat which could, eventually, hamper their charge for glory.
Fernando Torres has dropped off slightly from the incredible form he showed immediately upon his return, but both Mario Mandzukic and Antoine Griezmann have showcased their skill sets to their fullest.
All to play for
With two from three fit and firing, Atletico always have a chance, and at the other end both Diego Godin and Joao Miranda remain coveted by the worlds best teams.
It ain't over until it's over, and rest assured until that fat lady starts warbling, Simeone will ensure that every last drop of blood, sweat and tears are shed.
Write them off now at your peril.
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