MONACO, Sept 18 (Reuters) - Atletico Madrid battled their way back from a goal down to pull off a confidence-boosting 2-1 win at AS Monaco in Champions League Group A on Tuesday, with a defiant response to their troubling start to the domestic season.
Atletico have won only one La Liga game so far and their problems at home looked to have followed them into Europe when some haphazard defending allowed forward Samuel Grandsir to score from close range and put the French side ahead in the 18th minute.
Diego Simeone’s side continued to suffer and it took a flying save from goalkeeper Jan Oblak to prevent Jean-Eudes Aholou from doubling Monaco’s lead with a venomous long-range strike.
Diego Costa gave the visitors a lifeline just after the half-hour mark by controlling a clever through ball from Antoine Griezmann and providing a cool finish.
It proved a shot in the arm to Atletico and they responded by dominating the rest of the half, eventually clinching the winner on the stroke of halftime when defender Jose Gimenez headed home from a corner, helped by sloppy goalkeeping from Monaco keeper Danijel Subasic.
Costa had a goal correctly ruled out for offside at the start of the second period and Atletico came under pressure in the final stages but withstood a late charge from Monaco to see out a much-needed victory. (Reporting by Richard Martin, Editing by Neville Dalton)