Diego Costa scored and then was immediately sent off on his first La Liga game back for Atletico Madrid as they brushed local rivals Getafe aside 2-0 on Saturday.
Truth be told, in horrible weather conditions on Spain’s Three Kings’ day, the referee seemed determined to make it all about himself, brandishing yellow cards as if they were treats. This culminated with a lack of common sense: an emotional Costa celebrated with the Atleti fans after scoring his side’s second, only to return to the field of play to a second yellow. Technically it was probably the right decision, but it was very petty.
Angel Correa opened the scoring with a delightful finish early on after good work from Antoine Griezmann, before the Costa show started and it shows no signs of slowing down. Two games, two goals and a red card. Strap yourselves in!
Costa makes such a difference to this team. He and Antoine Griezmann already seem to be on the same wavelength.
Costa’s red soured the afternoon but the refereeing display was inept in general as he completely lost control of the game.
Manager rating out of 10
8 — A clean sheet and back to winning ways for Diego Simeone’s side. The XI was very attacking, which bodes well.
Player ratings (1-10; 10 = best. Players introduced after 70 minutes get no rating)
GK Jan Oblak, 6 — A comfortable start to the year. Did not really have a save of note to make.
DF Sime Vrsaljko, 7 — The Croatia international is back to his best, defending stoutly and attacking with gusto. A wonderful spot and pick out for Costa’s effort.
DF Stefan Savic, 6 — Did what he had to do, with the visitors not really testing him or his centre-back partner out.
DF Diego Godin, 6 — Ditto. Solid and unspectacular, just as you would expect from the no nonsense Uruguay international, who looked refreshed after the Christmas break.
DF Lucas Hernandez, 6 — Does such a convincing job at full-back considering he is playing out of position. Direct on the ball but the end product was slightly lacking.
MF Yannick Carrasco, 6 — One of those days where things just do not quite work out for the Belgian. Is always willing and wants the ball but too often makes the wrong decision and will be looking over his shoulder with Vitolo’s shadow looming large.
MF Gabi, 7 — Picked up a booking which means he will miss next week’s game against Eibar, however used the ball well and kept his players in check as tempers flared.
MF Koke, 7 — Another who is looking fresher after two weeks off. Delivered some dangerous set pieces and linked well with the attacking duo. His relationship with Costa looks to have served the test of time.
MF Angel Correa, 8 — Given another chance to impress from the off and managed to make a real impact this time, showing composure and technique to delightfully open the scoring.
FW Antoine Griezmann, 8 — Showing very promising signs of linking up with Costa. A wonderful driving run and pass to feed Correa for the opener, too.
FW Diego Costa, 8 — Curled an effort onto the roof of the net early on to set the tone for an all-action display. Scored, got sent off, but he is box office at its best.
MF Thomas, 6 — Helped shore up the midfield for the final 25 minutes.
DF Jose Maria Gimenez, NR — On late with the game won.
FW Fernando Torres, NR — A time wasting sub in stoppage time.
Joseph Walker covers Atletico Madrid for ESPN FC. Follow him on Twitter: @Joe_in_espana.