Real Madrid's Karim Benzema scores from a penalty kick during the Spanish Super Cup final soccer match between Real Madrid and Athletic Bilbao at King Fahd stadium in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, Jan 16, 2022. (HASSAN AMMAR / AP)
RIYADH - Real Madrid beat Athletic Club Bilbao 2-0 to win the 2022 Spanish Supercup in the final played in the Saudi Arabian capital of Riyadh on Sunday.
A 37th-minute goal from Luka Modric and a penalty from Karim Benzema seven minutes after halftime gave Real Madrid the 12th Supercup of their history.
An 88th-minute penalty save from Thibaut Courtois saved any nervous moments in the closing minutes. The Athletic Club never let their heads drop, but lacked effectiveness in the Madrid area.
The game started with Real Madrid looking to control the ball around the Athletic penalty area, but although they created a few nervous moments for the home defense with the combination of Luka Modric, Lucas Vazquez, Benzema and Rodrygo, they failed to work Unai Simon in the Athletic goal
The game started with Real Madrid looking to control the ball around the Athletic penalty area, but although they created a few nervous moments for the home defense with the combination of Luka Modric, Lucas Vazquez, Benzema and Rodrygo, they failed to work Unai Simon in the Athletic goal.
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At the other end, the Basque side had a penalty shot waved away despite David Alaba's handball.
The game evened up as the half progressed, but despite getting into some decent positions, Athletic were too wayward in the final ball and Casemiro had two chances for Real Madrid, but his shot was parried for a corner by Simon, who then tipped the Brazilian's header over the bar.
The first time Madrid were able to find a bit of space on the break Modic put them ahead with a lovely curling shot that went in close to the post in the 37th minute.
The second half was only seven minutes old when Benzema doubled Madrid's lead from the penalty spot after Yeray Alvarez handled. The Frenchman hit his shot into the left corner of the net just beyond Simon's outstretched hand.
After that goal Real Madrid were happy to sit and soak up pressure, but despite getting the ball into the Madrid area on several occasions, Athletic were unable to work Courtois.
They had a glorious chance to get into the game when Eder Militao was sent off for handling Raul Garcia's goal-bound header and Athletic awarded a penalty, but although Garcia struck his penalty hard down the middle, Courtois' outstretched foot Athletic a way back into the game as the keeper made a magnificent stop.
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