European football is back with a clash between two of this year’s winners this week as Real Madrid pit their wits against Europa League champions Eintracht Frankfurt in the UEFA Super Cup final at the Helsinki Olympic Stadium on Wednesday night.
Carlo Ancelotti’s side got the better of Chelsea, Manchester City, and Paris Saint-Germain en route to the Stade de France last term and defeated Liverpool 1-0 in the final thanks to Vinicius Junior’s winner.
Real Madrid have a fully-fit squad at the moment and have a host of seasoned players in their ranks.
Undisputed number one Thibaut Courtois is sure to start in goal.
Eder Militao and David Alaba look set to once again be Real’s first-choice central defensive pairing, in front of Thibaut Courtois and flanked by the duo of Dani Carvajal and Ferland Mendy.
Luka Modric, Casemiro and Toni Kroos could start in midfield ahead of both Tchouameni and Eduardo Camavinga.
Vinicius Junior and Karim Benzema are nailed on to start, and Federico Valverde will expect to edge out Rodrygo and Marco Asensio, as he did during the latter stages of the 2021-22 Champions League.
That XI lined up both against Liverpool in Paris and in the 2-0 friendly win over Juventus in their final pre-Super Cup friendly – leaving the likes of Eden Hazard, Marco Asensio, and Rodrygo benched.
Possible starting lineup XI： Courtois; Carvajal, Militao, Alaba, Mendy; Kroos, Casemiro, Modric; Valverde, Benzema, Vinicius Jr
Preview of Real Madrid vs Eintracht Frankfurt
Eintracht Frankfurt are rooted to the bottom of the Bundesliga standings and have made the worst possible start to their league campaign. The German outfit suffered a 6-1 thrashing at the hands of Bayern Munich in its first game of the season and has a point to prove in this fixture.
Real Madrid, on the other hand, have been impressive under Italian coach Carlo Ancelotti and will be intent on winning another medal this year. Los Blancos defeated Juventus by a 2-0 margin in their previous game and will look to achieve a positive result this week.
How’s the last clash between Real Madrid and Eintracht Frankfurt?
It will be the two sides’ first competitive meeting since the sensational 1960 European Cup final, when Real Madrid won the competition for the fifth time in a row, beating Frankfurt 7-3 at Hampden Park in Glasgow. Alfredo Di Stéfano scored three and Ferenc Puskás four for the winners, though Richard Kress briefly put Frankfurt in front and Erwin Stein struck twice for the German side in the second half.
Celtic great Jimmy Johnstone recalled his feeling after watching the match:
“It was like a fantasy staged in heaven. I had never seen football like it, nor would I ever again. I’ll recite the names of that Madrid forward line till the day I die.”