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Real Madrid Outclass Man United To Retain UEFA Super Cup

Real Madrid Outclass Man United To Retain UEFA Super Cup

By James Agberebi:

UEFA Champions League winners Real Madrid edged Europa Cup holders Manchester United 2-1 to retain the UEFA Super Cup in Skopje, Macedonia on Tuesday.

A goal in each half from Casemiro and Isco gave the dominant Madrid a 2-0 lead.

Romelu Lukaku scored for United following a mistake by Madrid keeper Keylor Navas for the Belgium striker's first competitive United goal.

The win means Madrid have now won the Super Cup four times after initially winning it in 2002, 2014 and 2016.

Also, it is United's third straight loss in the Super Cup following defeats in 1999 and 2008 with their only win coming in 1991.

Gareth Bale had the game's first real chance in the third minute off Marcelo's deflected cross but his effort went narrowly over the bar.

Madrid had another chance in the 16th minute through Casemiro only to direct his header from a corner against the cross bar.

Madrid's eventually broke the deadlock on 24 minutes thanks to Casemiro who beat the United's offside trap to slot the ball past David De Gea from Daniel Carvajal's floated cross.

United were awarded a free-kick in a good area following a foul on Paul Pogba by Casemiro but Ander Herrera's lofted cross into the box evaded everybody.

Pogba went close for United in the 37th minute after being setup only to see his effort come off Carvajal.

Madrid almost doubled their lead in the 43rd minute through Karim Benzema whose low shot inside the box was palmed away by De Gea.

Lukaku had a chance to equalise for United on the stroke of half time after outjumping Sergio Ramos but saw his header go straight to goalkeeper Keylor Navas.

In the first minute of the second half United made their first change with Marcus Rashford replacing Jesse Lingard.

In the 48th minute, De Gea denied Toni Kroos with a brilliant save away for a corner.

A minute later a timely block by Chris Smalling prevented Marcelo from making it 2-0.

However, it did not take Madrid long to double their lead as Isco slotted the ball past De Gea after an interchange of passes with Bale.

United should have reduced the deficit but Lukaku blasted his effort over the bar from close range after Navas' initial save from Pogba's header.

In the 61st minute, Bale was presented with a big chance to extend Madrid's lead but he struck his shot against the bar.

Lukaku made it 2-1 in the 62nd minute from close range after Navas spilled Nemanja Matic's long range strike.

The game was halted in the 77th minute following a head collision between Marouane Fellaini and Ramos with the Belgian ending up with head stitches.

Rashford had a big chance to draw level on 81 minutes after he was played through by Henrik Mkhitaryan but his goal-bound shot was saved by Navas.

With three minutes left Navas was almost caught with a long free-kick after he was spotted off his line but he averted the danger.

Navas and De Gea pulled off brilliant saves in the closing stage of the game to deny Fellaini and Asensio respectively.

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