Real Madrid retain UEFA Super Cup with victory over United

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Picture: uefa.com

SKOPJE- Real Madrid have won the UEFA Super Cup for the second straight year after defeating Manchester United 2-1 in Macedonia thanks to goals from Casemiro and Isco.

Cristiano Ronaldo started the game on the bench; while Bale, who Mourinho wants to sign, started for the European champions. Three debutants for United as Matic, Lindelof and Lukaku all started.

United started the game off well, with good intensity and pressuring Madrid’s defence; but were unable to find an opening.

Madrid came close to opening to scoring when Casemiro’s header smashed off the crossbar and out.

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Casemiro celebrates his goal. Picture: uefa.com

It wasn’t long after he hit the bar when Casemiro redeemed himself by putting the European champions’s ahead. Controversy over if he was offside but the goal stood as Ramos’ chipped pass found the Brazilian who placed the ball into the bottom right corner.

The rest of the half was dominated by Real Madrid, who had a lot of the possession. Chances were few and far between for United. Lukaku had a header just before halftime which was right at Navas.

Marcus Rashford replaced Jesse Lingard at the break as Mourinho looked for a different approach to the second half.

Madrid nearly doubled their lead in the first minute of the second half when Toni Kroos’ shot was saved by De Gea who got down to his right well.

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Isco celebrates his goal. Picture: uefa.com

In the 50th minute Real Madrid got their second goal when Isco broke through the United defence and curved the ball into the bottom corner.

United nearly pulled a goal back right away when Pogba’s header was saved by Navas and Lukaku missed the rebound.

The second half was full of chances, Gareth Bale’s shot smashed off the crossbar and nearly sealed the game for Madrid.

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Lukaku pulls a goal back for United. Picture: uefa.com

Lukaku made up for his earlier miss by scoring for United, making it 2-1 with around 20 minutes to play. Matic’s shot was saved by Navas and Lukaku was quick to pounce on the rebound.

United were coming into the game more, Rashford had a glorious chance which was saved by Navas; Rashford looked to place the ball into the bottom right corner but the Costa Rican keeper came up big.

Late pressure from United wasn’t enough as the game ended 2-1 and the Super Cup stays in Madrid for the second consecutive year.

It was a good bit of entertainment as United really gave Madrid a game; as the Champions League group looms, it shows that teams will be eager to dethrone Real Madrid this season.

Starting lineups:

Real Madrid: Navas; Carvajal, Ramos, Varane, Marcelo: Casemiro, Modric, Kroos; Isco, Benzema, Bale.

Subs: Asensio 74′, Vazquez 74′, Ronaldo 83′.

Manchester United: De Gea; Valencia, Lindelof, Smalling, Darmian; Pogba, Matic, Herrera; Lingard, Lukaku, Mkhitaryan.

Subs: Rashford 45′, Fellaini 56′.

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