Much was made of Real Madrid’s starting eleven pre-match, which, at an eye watering €458.5m (£364m), was the most expensive ever. However, their first half performance was befitting of that title.
Ronaldo, Gareth Bale and James Rodriguez were as lucid in their movement as Luka Modric and Toni Kroos were meticulous in their distribution and Real could have been two goals to the good by the time Ronaldo opened the scoring with 30 minutes on the clock.
First Bale had a goal-bound effort blocked after James had found him at the far post following a ferocious break before Beto saved at the feet of Ronaldo moments later.
However, those two combined to open the scoring with the contest half an hour old. Ronaldo found Bale on the left, who then whipped a teasing ball to the back post for the Portuguese to tap in.
Ronaldo extended his side’s advantage just four minutes into the second half to settle the tie in Madrid’s favour. Having received a wonderful through ball from Karim Benzema, the Portuguese forward took the ball out of his feet with one touch before firing across Beto and into the far corner from just inside the box.
Sevilla remained defiant in the face of almost constant pressure but it was a comfortable evening for Madrid in truth as the Adalusians barely threatened going forward.
Cristiano Ronaldo of Real Madrid takes a shot during the UEFA Super Cup between Real Madrid and Sevilla FC at Cardiff …
13’ – CHANCE! Ronaldo’s vicious, dipping effort has Beto beaten but a deflection takes it just over the bar.
25’ - RONALDO CHANCE! Kroos switches the play to Benzema who finds Ronaldo in the box. His first touch takes two Sevilla defenders out of the game but Beto is equal to his effort.
30’ - GOAL! That is a typical Real Madrid goal. They break at pace. Ronaldo finds Bale out wide on the left who then sends in a deep, devilish cross for Ronaldo to tap in at the back post.
34’ CLOSE - That is poor from James. A very loose clearance culminates in Casillas having to block a Carrico effort from no more than six yards out.
49’ - GOAL! Ronaldo doubles his side’s advantage. That is great from Benzema, who lets the ball run across his body some 40 yards out before slipping a delightful ball into the path of Ronaldo. Ronaldo takes a touch and fires across Beto from just inside the box.
68’ - JAMES EFFORT! Bale, who is really beginning to dictate this game, strides forward again and switches to the left for James who takes a touch and hits the target. Beto palms it wide.
90+3’ CHANCE! Bale strides forward and draws a great save from Beto from distance. That is the final action of the game.
TALKING POINT: How good can this Madrid side be? A very tricky question, they have an incredible array of individual talent but, over the course of the season, will Carlo Ancelotti be able to shoehorn them into a cohesive unit. On this evidence, yes but are James Rodriguez and Toni Kroos upgrades on Angel Di Maria and Xabi Alonso?
MAN OF THE MATCH
Real Madrid - Sevilla (Ronaldo)
Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid): Who else? There has been talk of his fitness in pre-season but this performance must have put any worries to bed. A superlative exhibition of guile, power and finishing.
Real Madrid: Casillas 6, Carvajal 6, Ramos 6, Pepe 7, Coentrao 6; Modric 7, Kroos 8; Ronaldo 9, James 6, Bale 7; Benzema 6. Subs: Illarramendi 5, Marcelo 5, Isco 5.
Sevilla: Beto 6, Coke 6, Fazio 6, Pareja 6, Fernando Navarro 6; Krychowiak 7, Daniel Carrico 6; Suarez 6, Vitolo 6, Vidal Parreu 6; Bacca 6. Subs: Reyes 5, Aspas 5, Figueiras 5.
THE MATCH IN A TWEET
- Sports & Recreation
- Cristiano Ronaldo
- Real Madrid
- James Rodriguez
- Gareth Bale
- Toni Kroos