Athletic Bilbao 0-2 Real Madrid summary: score, goals, highlights, Spanish Super Cup final
Athletic 0-2 Real Madrid: match summary
Real Madrid secured a 12th Spanish Super Cup at the expense of defending champions Athletic in Riyadh, extending their recent hegemony over the Lions to foreign soil after doing a double over Marcelino’s side in LaLiga in December. As was the case in those two games, which ended 1-0 and 2-1 to Ancelotti’s leaders, Athletic gave as good as they got but lacked a clinical edge in front of goal and ultimately fell short due to a chronic inability to put the ball in the back of the net. In 21 Liga games this season, Marcelino’s side have scored 20, fewer than any side in the top 10 and rock-bottom Levante. They have also only conceded 17, but Marcelino’s tactic of keeping Madrid at bay and looking to hit on the counter was always risky against the form of Karim Benzema, Vinicius and Luka Modric.
The Croatian midfielder, who seems to be able to control the ball and the game to the extent that everything around him slows to his advantage, put in another vintage performance capped with a wonderful first-half finish from a swift Madrid move, starting at the feet of Courtois and ending with Unai Simón grasping thin air. Marcelino reacted quickly, sending out Nico Williams, who was on target in the semi-final against Atlético, after the break but the Athletic manager’s plans were scuppered when Yeray Álvarez was penalized for handball shortly after the restart. The fact that David Alaba had committed a similar error in the Madrid penalty area in the first half did not escape Marcelino, whose objections were noted in the referee’s book.
Benzema duly dispatched the penalty and from there it was always going to be an uphill struggle for a side who are barely on speaking terms with the scoreboard. Athletic improved considerably on the back of a Marcelino triple change with Raúl García and Nico Williams combining several times to keep Courtois interested. The Lions would have been worth at least one goal for their efforts and seemed destined to test Madrid’s mettle in the home straight when Éder Militão took one for the team by throwing an arm at a ball in the area.
However, Thibaut Courtois apparently held little truck with the idea of inviting an onslaught and potential extra time by pulling off a remarkable save from García’s decently hit penalty, extending his trailing leg skywards to deflect the effort.
From there, Athletic kept the pressure on Madrid, who shored up by sending on Nacho, but even the indomitable Lions must have felt that it was not to be their night after Courtois’ heroics. With little left on the clock, Madrid played for time and kept Marcelino’s side at bay for the remaining few minutes, to seal what is Ancelotti’s fifth different title with Madrid. The Italian now lacks only LaLiga, and that seems to be purely a matter of time as well.
And there's the whistle! Madrid are Super Cup champions! Athletic, winners last year, are dethroned.
But time is not on the Lions' side... the Madrid fans in the stands - about 97% of the crowd - are celebrating already.
One thing you can always rely on from Athletic, they will never give up. Still they pour forward, in the belief that they can turn this upside down.
Four minutes added.
Nacho comes on for Madrid, Ancelotti shutting down the show down to be safe.
That is also a very cruel blow for Athletic, who have been the better side in the last 20 minutes since Marcelino rolled the dice.
That was, quite frankly, one of the best penalty saves we've ever seen!
Saved! What a stop from Courtois! The Belgian repels Raúl García's shot with a flying boot!
The Brazilian got himself in the way of a goalbound shot, illegally, and gets his marching orders!
Penalty and red card for Militão!
Change for Madrid, Marcelo on to a huge cheer, Vinicius making way.
Serrano! What a story that would have been! Nico Williams does well on the left to get a cross in, it takes a deflection and drops to the teenager, who doesn't have much time to react but forces Courtois into another stop.
Serrano straight into the action with a shot from distance that forces Courtois into a save, albeit a pretty comfortable one.
Change for Athletic: captain Iker Muniain off, young academy prospect Nico Serrano, the 18-year-old forward, on.
But cracks his effort straight into the Madrid wall.
Free kick for Athletic as Militão floors Nico Williams. Iñigo Martínez fancies this one...
Dani García goes into the book - for the first caution of the game, other than Marcelino - after chopping Vinicius down.
The Garcías - Dani and Raúl - combine and the latter hits a stinging volley that Courtois turns round the post for a corner.
Valverde gets clean away on the right again but can't pick out a telling ball with Madrid again three on three as Athletic push forward in search of a goal to get back into this.
Casemiro and Mendy get into a bit of a pickle trying to play it out from the back before the Brazilian remembers that thumping it into next week hasn't been outlawed quite yet.
Valverde drives down the right and pings in a decent cross for Benzema but he can't control the delivery.
Change for Madrid as Rodrygo makes way for Fede Valverde.
García again! The forward meets a cross and is unmarked in the area but heads wide.
Raúl García! Nico Williams mishits a shot and it lands nicely for the veteran, who stabs a shot wide under pressure.
Madrid have a chance to break in a three on three with the Athletic back line but Rodrygo makes a hash of his pass to Benzema and it comes to nothing.
Benzema! Kroos clips in a free kick and the Frenhman connects, but the flag was up.
The number of times Athletic have scored two goals this season: 6
The number of time Athletic have scored three goals this season: 2
Marcelino appears to be about to the make a triple change.
Goooooooooooooooal! Simón goes the right way and almost gets a fingertip to it but Benzema hit it with venom and that was pretty much unstoppable!
Penalty given! Madrid will have the chance to double their lead from the spot. The ref has a yellow out as well, possibly for Marcelino, who is not happy.
Another patient move from Madrid that culminates with Lucas teeing up Benzema, whose shot hits Yeray and it out for a corner.
We're back underway!
The change is confirmed, Nico Williams on for Berenguer.
The teams are heading back out now and it looks as though Nico Williams will be coming on for Athletic.
And there's the half! Madrid go into the break a goal to the good from Modric's wonderful strike. Athletic have rarely threatened Courtois in the opening 45 but have created a few openings.
One minute added.
Sancet! The Athletic forward dances into the area, jinks and shoots and his effort creeps just wide of Courtois' far post.
Nico Williams is out to warm up already.
Modric allows himself a little smile as he tries to repeat his previous trick and skews a shot horribly wide.
Another corner for Madrid as Lucas pings a ball towards Benzema and Unai Núñez heads it behind.
That will mean a bit of a rethink for Marcelino, who will have to be a bit more front-foot minded after the break. He has Raúl García and Nico Williams on the bench.
A quick transition from Madrid and Rodrygo pulls the back for the Croatia midfielder, who hammers a beautifully place shot past Simón.
It's clipped in low by Muniain and easy for Madrid to deal with.
Athletic have a handy looking free kick out on the left as Rodrygo floors Muniain.
Berenguer slings in a cross but Courtois comes and claims. Athletic are finding it difficult to create antything much in the final third with defensive duties to the fore at the moment and few runners up in support of Sancet and Williams when they do get forward.
Casemiro! The Brazilian did well there to trick Simón, glancing toward the area as if to cross and then hitting a shot at the near post. The Athletic keeper was equal to it though.
Madrid are flooding forward but Athletic are so well set up that there's little room for Ancelotti's side to inflict any damage.
Kroos perhaps lucky not to go in the book there for a cynical challenge on Berenguer to prevent an Athletic break.
Rodrygo earns another corner for Madrid... it's a good one from Kroos, who drops it on the penalty spotm, but Athletic manage to hack it clear.
Militão! He had an open goal there if he'd managed to guide his header on target but Simón did just enough to put the Brazilian off his stride and the effort spoons over the bar.
Benzema! The Frenchman unleashes a shot after good work from Rodrygo and Simón is forced to tip it around the post for a corner.
It's a decent enough delivery from Muniain but a bit too high and deep to cause the Madrid back line any real trouble.
Sancet chances his arm from distance and it's deflected out for a corner. Ancelotti warned his side about the danger Athletic pose from set pieces before the game.
Athletic feel they might have had a penalty there as Alaba went to gound in the area to cut out a Sancet ball for Williams. The ref shakes his head though.
A half-chance for Athletic as the ball is played across the Madrid area. It's behind Williams though and Kroos is there to mop up.
Lovely run from Rodrygo, who drives into the area and evades a couple of challenges before an Athletic boot nicks the ball as he was shaping to shoot.
Vinicius tries to play in Benzema and the Frenchman almost finds a way through but Athletic close ranks and manage to clear.
A chorus of boos as Athletic finally win the ball. It seems the vast majority of the crowd in Riyadh are supporting Madrid.
Patient build-up from Madrid, the ball finds its way to Benzema in the area but Iñigo Martínez is there to snuff out the danger. Plenty of the ball for the white shirts in the early exchanges.
Here we go! Athletic get the ball rolling in Riyadh!
- 3Eder Militao
- 23Ferland Mendy
- 17Lucas Vázquez
- 20Vinicius Junior
A quick reminder of the line-ups.
- 1Unai Simón
- 18De Marcos
- 4Íñigo Martínez
- 19Oier Zarraga
- 14Dani García
- 8O. Sancet
The teams are coming out on to the pitch now, looks like a full house in the stadium.
Ancelotti on Athletic
"Athletic have a range of attributes, including a solid defence, organisation, pace up top, quality on set pieces... We have to bear that in mind. Our approach will be different to the semifinal because Athletic have different characteristics to Barcelona. From a defensive perspective, in the second game against them we were better. It will be decided on the details. Strength on set-pieces will be a big one."
Real Madrid starting line-up confirmed
Absolutely no suprises from Ancelotti, who rarely rotates unless he has to. Rodrygo comes in for Asensio, with Lucas Vázquez filling in for Carvajal.
Athletic starting line-up confirmed
Marcelino has elected to start with Oihen Sancet alongside Iñaki Williams, with the striker's brother Nico dropping to the bench despite scoring against Atlético. Óscar de Marcos slots in at right back with Berchiche also on the bench.
Goals really have been an issue for Athletic this season. No side in LaLiga has created as many chances as the Lions without putting them away and no side in the top 10 has scored as few as Athletic's 20 in 21 games.
This will be the third meeting between Madrid and Athletic in the space of a month after the vagaries of the Liga fixture list saw the sides play twice domestically recently. Madrid won both games by a single goal but Athletic were the better side for much of the 180 minutes and unfortunate not to take at least a point from the six available.
Athletic vs Real Madrid: potential line-ups
Athletic Club: Unai Simón, De Marcos, Yeray, Íñigo Martínez, Balenziaga, Nico Williams, Vesga, Dani García, Muniain, Raúl García, Iñaki Williams
Real Madrid: Courtois, Lucas Vázquez, Militao, Alaba/Nacho, Mendy, Modric, Casemiro, Kroos, Rodrygo, Benzema, Vinícius
Path to the final
Athletic reached the trophy decider by defeating LaLiga champions Atlético Madrid in Thursday’s semi-final, late goals by Yeray Álvarez and Nico Williams giving the Basques a 2-1 win over Diego Simeone’s men.
Meanwhile, Madrid saw off Barcelona in a thrilling last-four clash on Wednesday, Fede Valverde’s extra-time winner earning Los Blancos a 3-2 triumph over their arch rivals.
Athletic vs Real Madrid: team news
Both sides have almost a clean bill of health this evening, certainly compared to recent weeks anyway. Yuri Berchiche, Unai Núñez and Asier Villalibre should return for Athletic while Ancelotti is without Gareth Bale, Mariano, Marco Asensio and Dani Carvajal.
Madrid last won the Super Cup in 2019-20, beating Valencia in the semis and then Atlético on penalties in the final.
Ancelotti looking to complete his set
Carlo Ancelotti can add the only two titles to elude him as Bernabéu boss this season. Madrid are in pole position to win LaLiga and tonight the Italian schemer can add the Spanish Super Cup the UEFA version, the Champions League, Copa del Rey and Club World Cup trophies he has delivered as Madrid manager.
Athletic going for fourth Super Cup
Athletic will be looking to defend their title against Real Madrid, the Lions having won the tournament last season by seeing off Barcelona and tonight's opponents Madrid to win the Super Cup for the third time in club history.
Athletic vs Real Madrid: welcome
Hello and welcome to AS USA's live coverage of the Spanish Super Cup final between Athletic Bilbao and Real Madrid. Kick-off in this evening's game will be at 19:30 local time in Riyadh (also 19:30 CET).