Real Madrid 1 – 1 Manchester United (Penalties: 1 – 2)

David de Gea showed Real Madrid what they are missing by playing the hero act for Manchester United as they won 2-1 on penalties after a 1-1 International Champions Cup game on Sunday

The Spanish international, a long-time reported target of the Champions League winners, saved spot-kicks from Mateo Kovacic and Oscar before Casemiro hit the crossbar with his shoot-out kick – having scored from 12 yards in normal time – to hand United victory.

United took the lead shortly before half-time thanks to a sensational piece of play from Anthony Martial, the forward jinking away from Dani Carvajal, Luka Modric and Lucas Vazquez to give Jesse Lingard the simplest of finishes at the back post.

Casemiro levelled from the penalty spot after Victor Lindelof could only stop a rampaging Theo Hernandez by crashing into him before the Brazilian missed the decisive penalty in a poor shoot-out.

United remain unbeaten in the four matches they have played on their tour of the United States after holding off Madrid in searing temperatures, while the first pre-season match for Zinedine Zidane’s men ended in defeat.

The clubs will soon clash again as Madrid face United in the UEFA Super Cup in Skopje next month.

Lingard was one of two players retained from the United team that beat Manchester City 2-0 on Thursday and he had the first attempt with a shot Keylor Navas had to beat away.

In the stifling Santa Clara heat, the game was played at little more than walking pace, and Lingard bent a 20-yard effort narrowly wide after 40 minutes with Navas well beaten as both teams continued to struggle for attacking momentum at Levi’s Stadium.

But in the first minute of stoppage time, a moment of Martial magic provided the opener.

Brilliant skill from the Frenchman saw him cut inside off the left and evade three Madrid defenders before pulling back a precise low cross that Lingard tapped in from close range.

Zidane changed his entire XI at the interval while Mourinho made eight substitutions including introducing Romelu Lukaku and Paul Pogba, with Ander Herrera forced off through injury after just five minutes of the second half.

Madrid were handed a glorious chance to level the scores after 68 minutes when a dreadful Lindelof challenge on Hernandez resulted in a penalty.

Casemiro stepped up to smash the spot-kick past De Gea and more penalties were required to find a winner with neither side making a breakthrough after Marouane Fellaini wasted a golden chance with seven minutes to play.

Martial blazed the first kick well over the crossbar before De Gea saved from Kovacic and Kiko Casilla denied Scott McTominay.

De Gea’s save from Oscar allowed Henrikh Mkhitaryan to nudge United ahead but Madrid responded through Luismi Quezado before Lindelof hit his kick straight at Casilla and Hernandez scuffed wide.

Daley Blind converted his kick to pile the pressure on Casemiro, with the Brazilian thudding his effort against the bar to continue United’s fine run in pre-season.

Mbappe, Dolberg and Berardi on the shopping list

Real Madrid have made Ajax striker Kasper Dolberg and Sassuolo’s Domenico Berardi their alternative transfer targets if they fail to sign Kylian Mbappe, Marca  reports.

The European champions are in search of a new striker after Alvaro Morata’s move to Chelsea and will target a cheaper option should talks over Mbappe break down. The Italy Under 21 international and the Denmark No.9 would be brought in to play a back up role to their star forwards.


Real Madrid have offered Karim Benzema as part of a deal to sign Monaco forward Kylian Mbappe, according to  The Sun .

Los Blancos are closing in on a deal for the France international, with Benzema part of one of the bids currently on the table.

Official: Chelsea signed Alvaro Morata

Alvaro Morata’s move to Chelsea from Real Madrid has been completed, the Premier League champions have confirmed.

The 24-year-old striker has moved to Stamford Bridge for a reported fee of £70 million and has agreed to a five-year contract, having played 43 times for the European champions last season, scoring on 20 occasions.

However, he found himself surplus to requirements at the Bernabeu and has elected to join up with Antonio Conte’s side.

“I am so happy to be here,” he told Chelsea’s official website. “It’s an incredible emotion to be part of this big club. I am looking to work hard, score as many goals as I can and to win as many trophies as possible.”

Chelsea’s technical director Michael Emanelo added the club expect a great deal of him: “We believe he can make a great impact for Chelsea and look forward to seeing him in action. Alvaro has proven class at the highest level and his quality will be a huge asset to Antonio and the squad.”

The striker will meet with his team-mates on their pre-season tour of Asia, as they prepare to face Arsenal in Beijing on Saturday.

Conte insisted on Friday that Morata was his first-choice target for the No.9 role, despite Chelsea’s attempts to sign Romelu Lukaku before his move to Manchester United.

“I think for sure this is a good signing for us, he is a young player but has a lot of experience, he went to Juventus and Real Madrid,” Conte said of him. “He has a lot of experience and I think this is a good signing for us.”

Morata, who came through the Madrid youth ranks, narrowly missed playing under the Italian with Juventus, arriving at the Serie A giants for a two-season stint shortly after Conte departed for the Italy national team job, but revealed the manager’s influence played a great role in him electing to move to Stamford Bridge.

“I’m going to the team managed by the coach who has placed the most faith in me,” he said.

Willy Caballero, Antonio Rudiger and Tiemoue Bakayoko have already joined up with the Blues this summer, making Morata their fourth signing.

Dani Ceballos’ official presentation

The presidential box at the Santiago Bernabéu hosted Dani Ceballos’ official presentation as a Real Madrid player. Following a video of the player’s finest moments, Florentino Pérez had the following to say: “This is where your dreams come true. You followed your heart in choosing this badge and from now on you have the responsibility of defending it until the final whistle of every game. You must give your all until the last, just as our history dictates”.

“We are presenting a new player who will help to excite the fans and make their dreams come true. He is a young player who is excelling at this moment in time and will be a pillar of the club for the future. Though his humility, hard work and sheer talent, he was recently named best player at the Euro Under 21 championships”.

“Now the real challenge starts, and you must succeed at this club for you, your family and for our fans all around the world, who are already fully convinced of your talents. The fans will back you to the hilt, knowing that you will give your all for Real Madrid. You have already shown your class since your debut with Betis as well as with the Spanish national team, with whom you won the Euro Under 19 championship”.

Madridista
“Your commitment to wearing the badge of Real Madrid was key to you coming to the Bernabéu. This is the stadium you want to win in and this is the club you choose to give your all for. Your commitment to defending this badge, when you were wanted by so many clubs, will make all madridistas proud”.

Ceballos: “This was always my dream when I was young”
“I would like to thank the president for the faith he has shown in me. I had no other option but to say yes as it was always my dream to play here. I want to thank my family as they have accompanied me through everything. I have come to give everything for this club and help to make more great history”. The presentation ended with a photo of the new madridista along with his family, Florentino Pérez and several members of the board of directors.

(Source: RealMadrid.com)

Morata in Chelsea?

Real Madrid’s striker Alvaro Morata is closing in on an €80 million move to Chelsea, claims Marca.

Morata had previously been a target for Manchester United, but the arrival of Romelu Lukaku at Old Trafford, and inability to agree a deal with Madrid, has seemingly seen the Red Devils move on. AC Milan have also shown an interest, but Morata now appears poised to join Premier League champions Chelsea to end manager Antonio Conte’s search for a top-class striker.

Real Madrid won’t sign a replacement for Alvaro Morata, if the Spain international striker leaves during the transfer window, reports AS.

AC Milan and Chelsea have been linked with bids for Morata, after Manchester United seemingly ended their pursuit after bringing in Romelu Lukaku from Everton.

Madrid want Morata to stay for another season, but if their €90 million valuation is met, they won’t move to bring in another striker.

Real Madrid’s pre-season preview

Real Madrid are set for a busy pre-season as a result of their double-winning 2016-17 campaign, which saw them collect both La Liga and the Champions League trophies

By defending their European crown, Zinedine Zidane’s men added the UEFA Super Cup to a schedule that already includes the Spanish Super Cup between the winners of the league and the Copa del Rey.

With four matches – and plenty of travelling – in the United States also booked, the Blancos will certainly not be short of minutes when the league campaign gets under way.

This is your complete guide to the fixtures awaiting Real Madrid during pre-season:

Date Opponent Time (local / BST) Venue
Jul 23 Manchester United 14:00 / 22:00 Levi’s Stadium, Santa Clara
Jul 26 Manchester City 20:00 / 04:00 Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum, Los Angeles
Jul 29 Barcelona 19:30 / 00:30 Hard Rock Stadium, Miami Gardens
Aug 2 MLS All-Stars 21:00 / 02:00 Soldier Field, Chicago

Real Madrid are one of the clubs participating in the International Champions Cup and will travel to the United States for three fixtures in that competition plus one extra match.

The first game is against Manchester United in Santa Clara, California on July 23. The match against the Red Devils will be played at Levi’s Stadium, which houses 68,500 fans and is the home of the NFL’s San Francisco 49ers.

Madrid will then take a quick one-hour flight down the coast to Los Angeles, where Manchester City await three days later. That game will be played at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum, an older, bowl-shaped venue with a capacity of 93,000. College football’s USC Trojans play there and the NFL’s Los Angeles Rams are also temporary residents.

From there it is five hours by plane to Miami, Florida. At the Miami Dolphins’ 65,326-capacity Hard Rock Stadium in nearby Miami Gardens, Zidane’s men will contest the first Clasico against Barcelona played outside of Spain for 25 years. With over 70 per cent of Miami’s population speaking Spanish as a first language, expect a raucous crowd.

Once their ICC participation is over, Madrid fly three hours north to Chicago for the much anticipated MLS All-Star Game.

At Soldier Field, the 61,500-capacity home of the NFL’s Chicago Bears, they will play an exhibition match against the best players in MLS, with Kaka set feature against his former club and the likes of David Villa, Sebastian Giovinco and Bastian Schweinsteiger also included in the panel.

LA LIGA

The start dates for the Spanish season are yet to be confirmed. There has been conflicting information suggesting La Liga could start on the weekend of August 12 – a week earlier than usual – due to next year’s World Cup, but that is not official and would clash with the first leg of the Supercopa de Espana.

Madrid will, of course, play in that Supercopa as defending league champions. They will face Barcelona, who won the Copa del Rey, so we will see three Clasicos between the end of July and mid-August.

The second leg of the Supercopa – which Madrid will host at the Santiago Bernabeu – will then take place on Tuesday, August 15.

Before that, though, the Champions League winners will play Europa League winners Manchester United in Macedonia in the UEFA Super Cup on Tuesday, August 8.

Football Celebrities

There are football stars and then there are football celebrities. These are two different types of footballers. Although sometimes football stars become football celebrities. Which is very common. The trend of footballers turning their popularity with football fans into across platform celebrity status is increasing.

Players that retire to host soccer shows are the largest portion of football celebrities. However, these players are still in football. This can be likened to players that return to the game as coaches or technical advisors. They are still in the very same field that they got their fame.

There are players that have successfully moved into the world of being celebrities or professional poker or playing professional blackjack online. How do you tell that a player has made a successful switch? That is very simple. When the player is getting endorsements from companies that have very little to do with the sport. This shows that the player is capable of attracting people from across all sectors.

Players of this nature include David Beckham and Africa’s Austin Okocha. These two ended up getting deals to be the face of products that had very little to do with soccer. The two very talented players were exceptional footballers. However, they were far from being the best soccer players during their time. Even though some people will want to disagree with this. The reason being that people mistake popularity for talent.

In his best day Beckham was nowhere as good or as instrumental to team wins as Zinedine Zidane. But clearly, David Beckham is a bigger football celebrity than the Real Madrid coach. This is despite the fact that Zidane was a far superior footballer than “Becks”. The Beckham brand managed to gather more popularity across the world than other footballing personalities. This may be due to the players to Pop singer Posh Spice.

The highest level of popularity is when a player has a real money online casino game based on them. There are very few football brands that have their online casino slots using them as themes. Even less are individual players. This is despite the larger number of real money online casino games.

Ronaldo – Donnarumma swap incoming?

With the Portuguese looking for a way out of the Spanish capital, the Rossoneri are open to holding talks regarding a possible trade for their keeper

Real Madrid’s first opponent in the upcoming pre-season is Manchester United. If you want to find out the odds on this game, check them out here. According to some reliable sources, it’s quite possible that Ronaldo will be leaving The Galacticos even before this match-up against his former club.

Milan would be prepared to discuss a possible swap deal involving Cristiano Ronaldo and Gianluigi Donnarumma, says club director Massimiliano Mirabelli. The Portuguese forward is reportedly looking for a way out of Real Madrid this summer, with that decision sparking intense transfer talk ahead of the opening of the next window.

While the La Liga champions may be bracing themselves for a high-profile exit, they are also in the market for new additions.

Milan keeper Donnarumma is among those said to be on their radar, and Mirabelli has joked that there is a trade option available which could be of interest to the Serie A club.

He told Corriere dello Sport: “If Cristiano Ronaldo wants to leave Real Madrid and they want Donnarumma, then we’re ready to talk to President Florentino Perez.”

Madrid are not the only ones keen on Donnarumma, though, with Juventus general manager Giuseppe Marotta admitting that his club are planning a bid.

Mirabelli added: “I would’ve been stunned if Marotta had said anything else. Marotta is very talented on the market, so if he is interested in a goalkeeper, we are here.

“For the moment, nothing will happen. The input we got from the owners is not to accept offers. He is priceless and we will not sell him. For now.”

Milan find themselves in this situation after seeing Donnarumma snub the offer of fresh terms at the San Siro. Mirabelli is disappointed to have seen the 18-year-old make that decision, with a lucrative contract tabled. He said: “We wanted to make him a symbol of Milan for our fans and Gigio had everything required to fill that role.

“He would’ve had the captain’s armband and, frankly, it was an enormous offer, considering his young age and Milan’s situation: €25m net over five years means €50m gross for the club.

“On a human level, we were upset, especially as there was no chance for negotiation. It’s not true that on Thursday there was tension with Raiola and we argued with him. We both simply took stock of the situation and went our separate ways.

“We are upset, naturally, just as our fans are. And I say that with the utmost respect for Gigio and Raiola: everyone is free to make whatever decision they deem right.

“Now we are looking for a goalkeeper worthy of Milan. Whoever plays for Milan must realise what this jersey means.”

Athletic Bilbao 1 – 2 Real Madrid

 

 

 

 

 

Two goals by Casemiro and Benzema help Real Madrid beat the tough Basque side on San Mames, as they stretch their lead at the top of the La Liga table to 5 points.

Athletic had won 16 and drawn three of 19 games they played home since their last defeat against Barcelona, which was a big heads up for Real Madrid before the match.
Cristiano Ronaldo exploited the home side’s high defensive line in the 25th minute, as he raced through before crossing for Karim Benzema to score his 16th goal of the season. Valverde’s team had plenty of possession without threatening Real’s goal too often, but Aduriz capitalised on a rare moment of bad defending to head his team level midway through the second half.

Luckily for Real, Casemiro answered just three minutes later, tapping in a goal from close range after being left alone at a corner to secure Los Blancos’s 13th win in 15 league meetings with the Basque side. If you’d like to find out some trustable tips, make sure to visit FootballBets.tips.

This result gives Zinedine Zidane’s team some breathing space, as players head into the international break and leaves Barca needing a good result against Valencia to keep their hopes in the title race.