Reigning Champions League winners Real Madrid rode to a straightforward 2-0 victory over Europa League holders Sevilla in the UEFA Super Cup on Tuesday evening in Cardiff, Wales.
Cristiano Ronaldo picked up where he left off the 2013-14 season by scoring a goal in each half against Real's La Liga rivals to hand Los Blancos their third trophy of the calendar year.
Real Madrid head coach Carlo Ancelotti gave debuts to two new star players with Toni Kroos and James Rodríguez joining Luka Modric in the midfield. In defense it was a back four of Dani Carvajal, Pepe, Sergio Ramos and Fabio Coentrao in front of goalkeeper Iker Casillas, who got the nod over new arrival Keylor Navas. In attack it was a return to the trusted 'BBC' with Karim Benzema, Gareth Bale and Cristiano Ronaldo up front.
Sevilla boss Unai Emery rolled out a starting XI of Beto in goal, Coke, Federico Fazio, Nicolás Pareja and Fernando Navarro in defense, Grzegorz Krychowiak and Daniel Carriço as holding midfielders and Aleix Vidal, Denis Suárez and Vitolo in the attacking midfield along with lone striker Carlos Bacca.
The teams traded early chances and Ronaldo nearly broke the deadlock in the 26th minute but Beto stood tall with an impressive save to deny the Portuguese superstar. However four minutes later there was no stopping Ronaldo who slammed in a shot in the 30th minute after a pinpoint cross from Bale. Ronaldo did well to get behind the Sevilla defense and the ball from the Welshman, playing in front of his countryman, was inch-perfect to give Real a 1-0 lead at halftime.
Ronaldo continued to run rampant into the second half as he added Real's second just four minutes after the restart. Benzema swung a ball out wide and Ronaldo fired in a left-footer that glanced off the gloves of Beto and into the net to put Real up 2-0.
Between the two debutants, Kroos looked far more the comfortable as James displayed a kind of nervousness that went unseen at the World Cup in Brazil. However, as thing progressed into the second half, the Colombian grew into the match and nearly scored in the 67th minute when his left-footed rocket prompted a save from Beto.
Casillas had little to do in the Real goal but when tested he came up big, including an 89th minute block of a Krychowiak bullet from outside the area. The veteran netminder did well to keep his focus and deny the Andalusians a late score and clinch Real's second ever UEFA Super Cup title.