Mario Mandzukic scored the only goal of the game with barely two minutes on the clock, as Atletico Madrid edged out rivals Real Madrid 2-1 on aggregate to win the Supercopa de Espana.
With the scores level at 1-1 from the first leg, the new signing took just 81 seconds of his Vicente Calderon debut to fire home what proved to be the winner, and give his new side the first Spanish silverware of the 2014/15 season.
Manager Diego Simeone could find himself in hot water though after being sent to the stands midway through the first half, while Carlo Ancelotti’s side finished the game with 10 men after Luka Modric received a second yellow card late on.
The defending La Liga champions came flying out of the blocks on Friday evening, and made a sensational start to the second leg through Mandzukic.
Los Rojiblancos fans love a centre-forward, having idolised Fernando Torres, Radamel Falcao and Diego Costa to name a few, and the Croatian endeared himself to them immediately as he raced onto Raul Garcia’s flick-on from Miguel Moya’s goal kick, and drilled home the fastest goal in the history of the Spanish season curtain-raiser match.
After coming off the bench to score in the first leg, James Rodriguez started ahead of Cristiano Ronaldo and the £63 million man almost got the equaliser in the 24th minute following a swift one-two with Daniel Carvajal, but was brilliantly denied by Moya.
Then it was a case of déjà vu from the UEFA Champions League final in May, as Simeone once again stepped out of his technical area before being sent to the stands for taking his protests too far.
The enigmatic Argentine did nothing to help his cause though, as he patted the back of the linesman’s head – a move which could well keep him off the touchline for several games.
Back on the pitch, Gareth Bale was also narrowly off target from Rodriguez’s lay-off while the Colombian fired just wide on the stroke of half-time. At the other end, Garcia went close on a couple of occasions early in the second half for the hosts.
He guided Koke’s free-kick against the underside of the bar before the ball bounced just before the line, while he bent a powerful effort just wide of the target soon after.
Ronaldo came on for Toni Kroos at the break but the most he threatened was from a 30-yard effort that was straight at Moya, as he was limited by some stubborn Atletico defending.
Antoine Griezmann was starting for the first time for Atletico and he nearly gave them breathing space with 18 minutes remaining, as he pulled the ball narrowly wide of the far post.
Real were frustrated and they were reduced to 10 men in stoppage-time, as a desperate Modric caught Cristian Rodriguez late and left the referee with no option but to produce the second yellow card.
And the hosts held on to take the Supercopa – 29 years after their first success. While Ancelotti suffered his first defeat as Real boss in a match over two legs.
So it is advantage Atletico in the psychology department ahead of the domestic campaign which begins on Monday for the two sides. And with the league meeting at Santiago Bernabeu just three weeks away, they will fancy their chances of putting up a strong challenge of their title defence.
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