It was the late show at the Santiago Bernabéu, as both Madrid sides could only play to a 1-1 draw in a pulsating Super Cup first leg clash writes Jamie Currie.
Two late second-half goals from Colombian James Rodríguez and the ever-reliable Raúl García meant it is all to play for in Friday’s second leg at the Vicente Calderón .
The match began in typical derby fashion, tackles flying in at 100 miles per hour. Koke was shown a yellow card with just 4 minutes on the clock, due to his late lunging tackle on Pepe. Atleti left-back Siqueira was also book for a high tackle on Bale on the left-hand touchline.
Madrid were having most of the ball in the opening stages, with Atlético sitting off the play looking to counter. The Atleti goalkeeper was virtually a spectator in the first half. Bale had the only decent effort on goal for the home side. Modrić won the ball back pressing the Atleti midfield; he then fed Benzema who played it to Bale whose left-footed, fluffed shot trickled wide.
Atleti had a few chances of their own; Moyá’s long ball was flicked on Pepe after being pressured by Raúl García, which led to Mandžukić testing Casillas with a long-range dipping volley. Casillas had to get down low moments later; a lapse in concentration from Sergio Ramos led to Saúl nicking in and testing the Madrid number 1 who easily held his low shot.
Mandžukić should’ve given the visitors the lead, his lobbed effort was too weak after a well-worked free-kick from Koke which was headed back across the box into his path by Uruguayan Diego Godín.
Five minutes before the end of the half, Ronaldo made his first and only contribution. Koke was dispossessed in Madrid’s half, they broke with menace, but Ronaldo’s tame header from Bale’s cross went harmlessly wide.
Atleti just before the half-time whistle blew a big chance. Siqueira’s long throw was headed in the air by the Real Madrid defence, it wasn’t properly cleared. It fell to Saúl around ten yards from goal but the young midfielder could only head wide of Casillas’ left-hand post.
James Rodríguez replaced Ronaldo at half-time. The sub certainly made Madrid play at a much higher tempo. Moyá was forced into his first real save of the match. The always-willing Carvajal found Bale inside the box, and the Welshman skipped past Godín before being denied by the veteran shot stopper.
The game was becoming stop-start and heated, just before the hour, the main flashpoint occurred with Sergio Ramos having luck on his side managing to avoid a red card. He and Mandžukić challenged for a ball in the air, as they both were on the ground Ramos appeared to punch the Croat in the face. The referee seen fit to give both a yellow card.
Madrid’s high tempo was causing Atlético problems. Causing the visiting side to give away multiple fouls and they were almost punished for doing so. Gareth Bale unleashed one of his fierce free-kick efforts; it was only partially punched away by Moyá to Toni Kroos, the German who was only eight yards out managed to fire his effort over the crossbar.
The second-half Madrid pressure did pay off nine minutes from time. Carvajal rampaged his way down the right, as he had done all night, fired in a low cross where Benzema’s route to goal blocked by Godín. The ball eventually found its way to Rodríguez and via an Ansaldi deflection it went past Moyá to give the Colombian a dream derby goal.
The Colombian’s dream would quickly turn into a nightmare. After Koke and Miranda had passed up chances to equalise, the goal came with two minutes left on the clock. Everyone at the front post missed Koke’s wonderful whipped corner, it went all the way through to Raúl García who flicked a boot at the ball to send the Bernabéu into silence and grab that all-important away goal.
Real Madrid: Casillas; Carvajal, Pepe, Sergio Ramos, Marcelo; Xabi Alonso Modrić (Di María 78’) , Kroos; Bale, Ronaldo (Rodríguez 46’), Benzema.
Goals: Rodríguez 81’
Atlético Madrid: Moyá; Juanfran, Godín, Miranda, Siqueira (Ansaldi 64’); Saúl (Griezmann 57’), Gabi, Mario Suárez, Koke; Raúl García, Mandžukić (Raúl Jiménez 78’).
Goals: Raúl García 88’
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