The season begins for Real Madrid the same way the previous one ended: With a European trophy, although a minor one, just the Super Cup, beating Sevilla 2-0 through two goals from Cristiano Ronaldo. Despite all the changes, there was a lot of familiarity to the match.
Sevilla were no match for Real Madrid. Maybe when they play at home it’s a different story, beating Real Madrid there twice in the last two years. But on neutral ground? In Cardiff? It felt like a one team show, with the star-studded Real Madrid lineup taking over from the first moment and although the football wasn’t perfect, it was quite clear who was going to end up winning the match.
Ronaldo scored in the 30th and 49th minute, but some might say that Gareth Bale was the best player of the night. Maybe it was playing in Wales that did it for him, but it’s simply a continuation of how he finished last season, not to mention not having a summer of World Cup football to tire him. He actually looks bigger, maybe working out quite a lot with all the free time he had.
Both James Rodriguez and Toni Kroos were in the lineup. Luka Modric was the one who looked the busiest among the midfield players, while the Colombian star made an impression with his passing, especially in the first half. Real Madrid still have a couple of weeks before the season begins, but they certainly didn’t look out of sync for most of their performance against Sevilla.
This was Real’s first visit to the Super Cup match since 2002, winning it back then as well, making it two out of four for the most successful team in European history. Ronaldo opens his scoring tally earlier and deadlier than anyone expected, not showing a hint of that injury many thought would bother him or even keep him out of the match.
Obviously, we still need to see Barcelona and Atletico Madrid to make up our minds about who is the best team going into the season, but for now it’s quite clear Real Madrid have the early edge.