Real Madrid defeat Osasuna to win Copa del Rey
Rodrygo’s precise double propelled Real Madrid to Copa del Rey success in a 2-1 victory over Osasuna in Seville on Saturday.
Carlo Ancelotti’s Real Madrid won their 20th Spanish Cup in their 40th final, breaking a nine-year drought.
Osasuna, who have never won a major title, fought hard but fell short against the defending Spanish and European champions, who will meet Manchester City in the Champions League semi-finals on Tuesday.
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Rodrygo put Madrid ahead after only two minutes, and Ancelotti’s side had the better opportunities in the first half.
However, in the 58th minute, Lucas Torro equalized for Osasuna, giving them hope of an upset in their first cup final since 2005 and their second ever.
Rodrygo, on the other hand, was on hand again to volley home when a rebound went his way, ensuring Madrid would return the trophy to Madrid.
Ancelotti rested midfielder Luka Modric due to injury, while Jagoba Arrasate used midfielder Jon Moncayola at right-back to try to contain Real Madrid winger Vinicius Junior.
It was ineffective. In the second minute, Vinicius burst in down the left, and his dangerous cut-back was missed by Fede Valverde but hammered home by Rodrygo.
In stunning form, the Brazilian scored the first Copa del Rey final goal since 2006, a year after Osasuna became runners-up to Real Betis.
After another quick Vinicius break, Karim Benzema could have increased Madrid’s advantage, but Sergio Herrera stopped magnificently.
When on loan, Osasuna gained a foothold in the game and came within inches of equalizing. Ez Abde, a Barcelona winger, scored a goal.
The attacker took advantage of an Eder Militao mistake and lofted the ball over Belgian goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois, but Dani Carvajal cleared off the line.
Madrid pushed for a second goal, with David Alaba hitting the crossbar with a free kick and Vinicius collapsing in the area under siege from Osasuna defender David Garcia.
His pleas were denied, and Vinicius battled with Garcia, a lifelong fan who attended 2005 final and tousled his hair to anger him even more.
Vinicius was booked shortly before half-time for protesting, and he got into a violent confrontation with Osasuna replacement Chimy Avila as the players went in at half-time, with Lucas Vazquez intervening to break it up.
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When Abde’s deflected cross landed in his path, Torro hammered Osasuna equal from the edge of the box.
The club’s ardent followers celebrated enthusiastically, including the release of a flare that had to be doused, and one fan was carried away on a stretcher, although appearing to be happy.
Vinicius made another dangerous burst down the left, putting an end to Osasuna’s delight.
The striker supplied Toni Kroos, whose shot was blocked, but Rodrygo was in the right position at the right moment to finish with grace and secure the trophy for Real Madrid.