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Life goes on as usual: Real Madrid win another title

Ancelotti's men beat Eintracht Frankfurt 2-0 in the final of the Super Cup, beating the German side by a much better margin
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AFP/JAVIER SORIANO  -   Real Madrid players with the trophy after the UEFA Super Cup match between Real Madrid and Eintracht Frankfurt in Helsinki on 10 August 2022

Real Madrid continue their tradition of winning practically every final they play in, 17 out of 19 since 2014.

In Helsinki they had a much inferior opponent and the predictions were fulfilled. They were far superior to the German team and only held Real Madrid for the first half hour.

The Whites showed their experience and quality. They started with the same players who had played in the Champions League final and they all shone at a high level except for Ferland Mendy who, incomprehensibly, is still a starter in this Real Madrid team.

The level of the team is extremely high, starting with a goalkeeper like Thibaut Courtois who many did not even include among the 10 best goalkeepers in the world and today nobody doubts that he is the number one.

The defence, with the exception of Mendy, performed at a high level. The German team had only two chances, one of them offside. Eder Militao stood out for his speed and anticipation.

Casemiro shone again as he did at the end of last season and along with Valverde came to the rescue of his team-mates when they could have been overrun.

The engine room was slow to come into play because of Eintracht's high pressing, but Luka Modric and Toni Kroos were once again in control of the game.

They gave a feeling of total superiority, although it only translated into good play in bursts, when they connected with Benzema or Vinicius.

In the second half, the Croatian gave a recital of distribution of play, of bringing the ball out from the back with details that raised the admiration of the fans of both teams.

Karim Benzema did not miss his appointment with the goal and Vinicius, without reaching a great level, played a good game.

Then, in theory, the B team came on. They didn't have much time to show much as Carletto took a long time to make changes.

But Camavinga, Rodrygo, Rudiger, Tchouameni, Nacho, Ceballos, Asensio and Lucas Vázquez are very well qualified to keep the team up when needed.

The only criticism that can be levelled at the squad is the lack of goals in the absence of Karim Benzema, but it was shown last year that Rodrygo and Vinicius have stepped up when needed.

Other teams have strengthened as they do every year. City and Chelsea are leading the way. But the one team that seems to have to return to the elite is FC Barcelona.

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AP/JOAN MONFORT - Barcelona team players celebrate after winning the Joan Gamper trophy match between FC Barcelona and Pumas at the Camp Nou stadium in Barcelona, Spain, Sunday, Aug. 7, 2022.

It has been the surprise of the summer as far as transfers are concerned.

Lewandowski is the top star and is expected to score between 30 and 40 goals. Raphinha was one of the most influential players in the Premier League, although his team was on the verge of relegation. Dembelé has been re-signed, as well as youth players Gavi and Ansu Fati.

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AFP/PAU BARRENA - Barcelona's Polish striker Robert Lewandowski poses for photos with the Most Valuable Player trophy at the end of the 57th Joan Gamper Trophy friendly football match.

He has signed the Ivorian Franck Kessié to strengthen the midfield and Koundé and Christensen for the defence, in principle the weakest line.

The next thing is to build a team with these players and to manage a dressing room with many strong personalities. We have the example of PSG and City who have not yet won the Champions League.

In spite of everything, Real Madrid's squad is much stronger than last year and they are once again favourites to win La Liga and the Champions League.

In goal they have the number one: Thibaut Courtois.

The defence is more solid with the arrival of Rudiger, which will logically push Mendy out of the starting eleven. The German, Nacho and Lucas Vázquez always deliver. Carvajal is back to his best. Militao is starting at a very high level and Alaba continues to confirm that his signing was a great deal.

The midfield is the most consistent line with the arrival of Tchouameni and the great performances of Camavinga and Valverde. In case of further injuries there is also Ceballos.

The forward line led by Benzema and Vinicius will be accompanied by Rodrygo who is improving every day. Many expect Eden Hazard to return to his best. I'm not so optimistic, but he can also get minutes. There is also Asensio. We don't know if he will finally stay. It would be good because this year it looks like there will be minutes for everyone. There is the World Cup and if he doesn't play he won't have a chance to go to Qatar.

It's the start of an exciting Spanish league in a World Cup year. We will see if Barcelona translate their big investment and their a priori great team into titles.

We'll also see if the white team is capable of repeating last year's feats. It seems unrepeatable, but for the moment "life goes on as usual".