Varias are the scenes this season that show the marked Koke leadership both in the Athletic like in the selection. With the rojiblancos, where is the first captain Since the departure of Diego Godín, he will not forget how he went to cheer with Simeone to Trippier when he forced a throw-in in the Valladolid duel. With La Roja, the image in which, already substituted, he comes down from the stands to speak with Luis Enrique to give you some tactical appreciation.
Two examples, there are hundreds more, that the vallecano has broken into leader This season, where he has been key to winning LaLiga with his Atleti and where he has shown in the national team the character that so many times was thrown in his face that he lacked. A necessary genius when you are a heavyweight, a condition that Koke has earned so much with the rojiblancos, where he surpasses the 500 matches, as with the national team, where it has already reached fifty. And all with only 29 years old. There is a leader and it will last.
His first captain’s title
A process that has been fundamental to make Atlético the LaLiga champion. Both for his level of play, perhaps the highest of his career, and for the ability to lift the group after some painful defeats, like the one suffered in San Mamés. Then that captain inside him came out to convince everyone around him that they would end up achieving a title that seemed to escape. Unforgettable his audio stating, at the worst moment, that the championship would end up being rojiblanco. And so it was, with the first drink what lifts since the captain’s armband was sewn in 2019.
He put the batteries to colleagues … for their anger after being changed
For several weeks they chained anger in Atlético players after being substituted. Luis Suárez, Marcos Llorente and Joao Félis there were three of them. Given the possible problem that could be generated, it was Koke with Simeone who made the dressing room look that those attitudes were disrespectful to their peers. In fact, it has not been repeated in such an exaggerated way since the Madrid and the Argentine took action on the matter.
Simeone’s spread in the green
Koke’s leadership moves to the green, where her tactical ability to read matches makes her the Simeone’s extension in the field. Hence, El Cholo always defended him even in the worst moments of the 6, which also had other campaigns and which caused doubts in a sector of the fans. That, when his performance was low, something that hardly happened in the last season, where playing as a midfielder was the key to the core of the current LaLiga champion. A irreplaceable piece.
Very close to Unai and Morata, the two most criticized
Everything that has been said about Atlético has been extended to the national team, where those who have lived through the Eurocup close to that have exercised the leadership that they already carry out with the rojiblancos. He has been one of the most involved and one of those who led the group when Busquets, the first captain, tested positive for Covid. Hence, he was one of those who most supported Morata and Unai Simón when the critics were primed with both. Koke supported and cared for both of them to feel wrapped up like good leaders do.
The season ended busted
His way of playing, he does not save even half a career, has led him to end the season busted. At Atlético he plays everything and with Spain it has been the same. Luis Enrique, in fact, he changed against Italy because the number 8, the number that wears with the national team, was already completely exhausted. One more example that great leaders are those who lead by example. And Koke’s is not to haggle or half an effort, another of his guarantees in the leader who has exploded last season.