It’s time for the truth. Real Madrid kicks off its official season on Wednesday in search of the first title of the course, the European Super Cup, in which it starts as the favorite in the duel in Helsinki against Eintracht Frankfurt (7:00 p.m. GMT).
The white team, four times winner of the tournament, does not have good memories of its last European Super Cup, since it lost in 2018 by 4-2 against Atlético de Madrid in the Estonian capital, Tallinn. Now the new opportunity is again on the shores of the Baltic, but in another country and with confidence through the roof after his great finale last season.
In the friendlies of the US pre-season tour, Real Madrid has gone from less to more: they lost the Clásico in Las Vegas against FC Barcelona (1-1), tied with América de México (2-2) in San Francisco and showed its best face with the victory over Juventus (2-0) in Pasadena.
The preparation is over and the moment of truth arrives, in a week that, in addition to the European Super Cup, marks the start of the Spanish LaLiga season a few days later, with a visit to the recently promoted Almería this Sunday 14.
“You have to take into account those who won the Champions League. Playing the Super Cup is actually a continuation of last season,” coach Carlo Ancelotti told reporters during the US tour, referring to the players who won the the Champions League at the end of May against Liverpool (1-0) in Paris.
This title allows Real Madrid to play in the European Super Cup, just as winning the Europa League was what motivates the presence of Eintracht Frankfurt in the Finnish capital.
Eintracht has also been reinforced for the new course, especially incorporating Mario Götze and the Argentine Lucas Alario.
“We have formed a compact team and we have strengthened ourselves. We have strengthened the team spirit and we are ready for something big,” Colombian attacker Rafael Santos Borré, the hero of his team in the European final, recently told the Eintracht website. League.
Eintracht arrives at the European Super Cup with more competitive shooting than Real Madrid but with doubts about their current status. He played two official matches, with very uneven feelings: he won 4-0 against modest Magdeburg in the first round of the German Cup but was overwhelmed 6-1 at home by Bayern Munich, last Friday at the start of the Bundesliga .
– Semi-automatic offside –
The only precedent for an official duel between Real Madrid and Eintracht Frankfurt was 62 years ago, in the final of the European Cup -current Champions League- in 1960 and it turned out to be a memorable match: the Spanish team thrashed 7-3 with three goals from Alfredo Di Stéfano and four from Ferenc Puskas, thus achieving his fifth title as European champion.
In case of being proclaimed champion also on Wednesday, Real Madrid would achieve its fifth title in the European Super Cup after those of 2002, 2014, 2016 and 2017. Thus, it would reach the top of the list of winners to FC Barcelona and AC Milan, who achieved five each.
Eintracht Frankfurt, meanwhile, is a rookie in this competition. Until now, the only German club to lift this trophy was Bayern Munich, who did it twice (2013, 2020).
Wednesday’s match also marks the official premiere in UEFA competitions of a new technological tool to support refereeing decisions, the so-called semi-automatic offside.
Using a system of cameras capable of tracking twenty-nine different body points per player, the system will allow VAR teams to quickly detect offside situations.
This season, the system was also announced for the Champions League group stage. FIFA decided for its part to implement it equally for the World Cup in Qatar.