'Blessing from Heaven': Zinedine Zidane Hailed for 9/9 Record in Finals After Spanish Super Cup Win
Zinedine Zidane has now won all nine of the finals he has managed as Real Madrid defeated Atletico Madrid in the penalty shoot-out to win their 11th Spanish Super Cup.
Zinedine Zidane (Photo Credit: Reuters)
Zinedine Zidane's record as Real Madrid manager in finals is impeccable - nine trophies in nine final appearances. His latest was the Spanish Super Cup (Supercopa de Espana) on Sunday, as Real beat city rivals Atletico Madrid.
After the pulsating clash, which was decided via penalty shootout 4-1 in Jeddah (Saudi Arabia), Zidane said that the results show what Real Madrid are all about.
Zidande has won three Champions Leagues, two UEFA Super Cups and as many FIFA Club World Cup and Spanish Super Cups.
"In the end, we're all together and we prepared the matches well," said Zidane.
"I don't know why we've won nine out of nine. It's because that's what this club is like. It hasn't been easy, we've been patient, calm.
"At half-time, we didn't know how to get closer to goal, but we had patience. We believed until the end, like always.
"Winning a trophy is never easy and even less so against Atletico. Both teams had chances.
"We're still in lots of competitions. We have to be happy, but there's still lots to come. We have to keep working.
"We'll rest a bit and play again, as we can't think about dropping [our level].
"Now, we're going to enjoy ourselves, but there's still a long way to go in LaLiga, the Champions League and the Copa del Rey."
BLESSING FROM HEAVEN
Madrid president Florentino Perez after the match called Zidane as a "blessing from heaven".
"[Zidane] has plenty of trophies and we're very happy for him," Perez said, as reported by Marca. "I hope that he wins more trophies.
"Zidane has a loving relationship with Real Madrid. He decided to rest for a year and now he's returned with renewed energy. Zidane is a blessing from heaven."
"We came here without some great players like Hazard, Benzema and Bale," he said. "Zidane has been able to put together a team and we won the trophy.
"I think that we're on the path to finding ourselves again after a little dip. New people have come in who have given the team intensity and we're on a good path."
As for the penalty shootout, Dani Carvajal, Rodrygo, Luka Modric and Sergio Ramos all converted their spot kicks for Madrid.
Atletico's Saul Niguez missed his first penalty and Madrid goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois blocked the second attempt by Thomas Partey. Kieran Trippier converted for Atletico.
"I had studied their penalty-takers before," Courtois said. "I knew where Thomas was going to shoot. It was a good save because he struck it hard."
Madrid played the final five minutes of added time with 10 men after Federico Valverde was shown a direct red for fouling Alvaro Morata when he had only Courtois to beat. The ugly tackle from Valverde to cut down Morata, as he was charging toward Courtois, triggering a brief tussle between the teams' players.
"The most important play was the one by Valverde, who stopped us from having a chance that could have decided the match," Atletico coach Diego Simeone said. "He won the match."
(With inputs from Agencies)
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