Real Madrid continue their sensational run of form by winning the UEFA Super Cup after beating Manchester United 2-1 in Skopje, Macedonia Tuesday night.
A stunning goal by Isco – Real’s second – proved the difference on the night after United new boy Romelu Lukaku had halved the deficit with about 30 minutes of play left.
It’s a second straight Super Cup trophy for Zinedine Zidane’s men and their fourth overall, as Spanish sides have now won Europe’s traditional curtain raiser for a staggering eighth time in the last nine years.
United boss Jose Mourinho had spoken of a gulf in class between his side and the European champions, and the difference was evident in the opening hour as the Red Devils were left chasing shadows.
The barrage of attacks from Los Blancos paid off in the 24th minute when Casemiro broke clear of the offside trap to guide Carvajal’s pass beyond a helpless David de Gea.
Madrid made it 2-0 seven minutes after the restart when Isco weaved his way through the United defence and exchanged passes with Gareth Bale before finishing coolly from close range.
United looked livelier in attack with Marcus Rashford on for Jesse Lingard, but they were not helped when Lukaku blazed over after Keylor Navas failed to deal with a Paul Pogba header.
The big Belgian made amends for that miss in the 62nd minute, converting the rebound when a Nemanja Matic drive was not convincingly dealt with by Navas, but the keeper redeemed himself with a vital late save late on to deny Rashford as the Spaniards held on with Cristiano Ronaldo given a taste of action in the closing stages.