Super Cup: Barcelona 0 – 0 Atlético
Barcelona win Super Cup on away goals
Atlético Madrid have lost the Spanish Super Cup to Barcelona after a hectic game at the Camp Nou.
Over two games both teams were equal, but last week’s away goal was sufficient for Barcelona to win on aggregate. After a 1-1 at the Vicente Calderón, the teams played to a goalless draw on Wednesday night.
Despite the scoreline, there was plenty going on in the return leg of the Super Cup, which Barcelona dominated in the early goings. Atleti just about managed to hang on, with Filipe blocking Messi, and Alexis Sánchez coming up just short to volley in a cross from the left.
Atleti managed to get through the opening stages and established their Plan D. The Rojiblancos tried to break out quickly, and recorded the first attempt on target in the 35th minute, when Koke was at the end of a quick break involving David Villa, Diego Costa, and Gabi. Perhaps the latter should have taken the shot himself instead of laying it off, as Koke’s shot lacked power and accuracy.
At the other end, Arda Turan did well to give Messi a little shove just before the Argentine could take a shot, and Thibaut Courtois was able to comfortably catch Cesc Fabregas’ rebound.
Arda Turan then had the biggest opportunity to open the scoring and, possibly, bring us Super Cup glory. After a fantastic Barcelona-esque series of short passes, the Turk found himself inside Barcelona’s box, where he cut past Piqué before firing a shot towards the top corner from close range. But Victor Valdés responded spectacularly and pulled off an incredible save to prevent what seemed to be a certain goal.
The first half came to an end as Diego Costa and Alexis Sánchez both missed the target with their headers.
Atlético started the second half strongly and dominated at Camp Nou in the first 15 minutes after the break. Victor Valdés again saved the day, and the cup, for Barcelona with a fantastic effort to stop David Villa’s curler from outside the box.
With half an hour left Atlético seemed to run out of gas as Barcelona took over, which lead to opportunities for Neymar, and later for Lionel Messi, who was again denied by Filipe. The latter exchanged some words with the Argentine after a number of challenges. The left back, who played a great game up until that point, was shown a red card in the 80th minute, when he got into an altercation with Dani Alves.
The sending off was highly debatable, and was another controversial decision by referee Borbalán, who made a series of awful decisions on both ends. The growing frustration on Atlético’s side led to yellow cards for Gabi and Juanfran, and Arda Turan, who had been subbed off ten minutes earlier, also received a red card for criticizing the referee from the sidelines.
In the final minute another decision by Borbalán went against Atleti, as he awarded a penalty kick to Pedro Rodríguez. The tricky winger went down after minimal contact with João Miranda. Perhaps justice was served, as Messi missed from the spot, smashing the ball against the crossbar.
Atlético needed a goal to win, but thanks to a fantastic Victor Valdés, the game ended the way it began. Simeone’s men will be proud, however, after twice keeping up with Barcelona and showing that they are up for the challenge of competing for the prizes in Spain this year.
|28 August 2013|
|Alexis Sanchez (64')|
|Arda Turan (71')|
|David Villa (83')|
|C Rodriguez (83')|
|L Baptistao (88')|