Raúl García busts Madrid

Two goals from Navarre put Athletic in the final. Hazard suspended again. Only Asensio, who crashed two shots into the wood, gave the stature in Zidane's team.

It was Raúl García's dream, Lucas Vázquez's nightmare, another day (lost) in Hazard's office and a new Clásico that escapes Rubiales, who reinvented the Super Cup to look for him and who, for the second consecutive year, did not he found. This is how Madrid said goodbye to its first title and thus Marcelino showed that he is an instant coach. Athletic came out brave and lived off the income afterwards. In Madrid only Asensio did to be in the final.

There have been no surprises in Madrid's lineups for a long time. Nor in those of Athletic, despite the change of coach. The question is to determine if that speaks well of those who play (a lot) or badly of those who wait (too much), although the suspicion is that the benches are emaciated. This Wednesday a Madrid without a goal licensed an alleged scorer who cost 60 million to save two of his file, an unequivocal sign that nothing could be expected from there in the short term. You could talk about a bad deal if it weren't because keeping it would have made for an even worse business.

So those from (almost) always came out on both shores, with a prior suspense about Ramos, who noticed some discomfort in the warm-up and evacuated consultations with the doctor before saying yes, and with Dani García for Vesga in Athletic.

Hazard, midfielder

In the absence of news in the eleven, Zidane contributed them in the drawing: an asymmetrical 4-4-2 with Modric moderately on the right plus the support of Lucas Vázquez, Asensio on the left (in Pamplona he was indigestible with the change of band) and Hazard in the playmaker. A twist to see if the Belgian finds his place in life. A stroke of the rudder to energize the attack of a very short definition team. An attempt to give Benzema a partner who handles, like him, the language of inspiration more than that of self-denial. Not for those.

It remained, yes, a Madrid more in line with its history. He has been playing backwards for months, saving a lot back because he does not hit with his attack. This time he returned to the times of Casillas on the ground and Cristiano on the skies, hitting and receiving. Although in reverse order. After two attempts by Hazard, as unsuccessful as his signing is being, he swallowed a goal recklessly: Lucas Vázquez missed the start and the García made him pay. Dani stole, Raúl decided. Marcelino's law. The dream of the former Atlético, never pleasant in Madrid. A poorly protected area was sought, between Casemiro and the centrals, and gave the Zidane team the night.

Lucas Vázquez's penalty

The goal further cleaned up the game, already as fun as the day before. A shot from Asensio, another from Muniain, a cross without a shot from Lucas. The pim, bang, bang. By then Madrid had returned, without explanation or success, to 4-3-3, with Asensio on the right, and Athletic kept the script. Until Lucas got the forward he has inside in the wrong area. He was overtaken by Íñigo Martínez behind him and he knocked him down without scruples. Penalty from the winger, not from the side, and a double from Raúl García. The hero of the last month reduced to ashes and Madrid definitely decomposed.

The situation demanded a shake from the bench, but Zidane does not believe unit B. Not even Vinicius, that disorderly transgressor who so many times got him out of trouble. So the same ones came out except Varane, touched by a stomp, plus Nacho. The 50 million Militao are still in the safe. But with them, another Madrid appeared, careless, but with the push that a limit situation demanded. In fact, the first noticeable event of the restart was a frank header from Munain that brushed the post. Yes, Marco Asensio touched it twice, in brutal shots, from near and far. Two shoes on the march that deserved a better outcome and were able to put Madrid into the match with a still usable room for maneuver. The Spaniard walked well above the team average.

Mariano plus Ramos

The second generation, which is stuck, arrived too late: Vinicius and Valverde, the most promising of that renewal operation that has not just started. Marcelino also refreshed the equipment without changing the drawing. All his substitutions were piece by piece to vitaminize Athletic before the presumable downpour of Madrid.

And the shower came. A quarter of an hour from the end Benzema scored, a goal annulled by the line and validated by the VAR. All millimeter. And almost immediately, the second of the French. The line also raised the flag, this time with success. It was Benzema's third goal annulled for offside in two games. That imperfection is left over from the dark times.

The end was a failed onslaught by Madrid, who tried by force what they failed to achieve by skill, with Mariano and Ramos sticking their heads in that bombardment. That was always the Athletic remedy. For Madrid, which is about something else, it did not work and did not find the help of the VAR in an arm-shoulder clearance by Unai Núñez almost at ground level. This is how the fight for a short-distance title, Zidane's specialty, went away.

Photos from as.com
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