La Liga

Radamel Falcao's hat trick powers Atletico

August 28, 2012
By ESPN.com news services

Radamel Falcao's "almost perfect" match against Athletic Bilbao powered Atletico Madrid to a dominating 4-0 victory Monday -- a perfect warm up for their European Super Cup meeting with Chelsea on Friday.

"Falcao had an extraordinary game, almost perfect." Atletico coach Diego Simeone said.

Simeone dismissed any suggestion his side might have had one eye on the upcoming game against Chelsea heading into the La Liga meeting with Athletic.

"We try to think game by game. And the best way to prepare for another big clash is to do well in the previous game," he said.

Simeone praised the play of his bench in Monday's match.

Radamel Falcao now has seven goals in three matches against Athletic Bilbao after his hat trick Monday.

"I especially liked all the guys who came off the bench (Adrian, Diego Costa and Tiago). We have to know that we have strength in the team because there are options, something that gives us optimism and from that we'll go into a match against the greatest team from England."

Falcao scored his first goal with a brilliant individual effort at the 19-minute mark and notched his second just before halftime as he slotted home Diego Godin's fine cross at the back post.

Athletic continued to offer little resistance after the break and Falcao completed his hat trick from the penalty spot just shy of the hour mark before Tiago rounded things off with a stunning strike from outside the box late on.

Falcao has now scored seven times in three matches against Athletic -- including two in the Europa League final.

"It was a great night in which I scored three goals. I could have had more but I'm happy with the three," he said, according to the team's website.

Information from the Press Association was used in this report.