Saturday, July 30, 2016

Real Madrid holds off a second half Chelsea FC rally in a 3-2 win

                                     Photo Credit: Dana Afana

By: Dana Afana
Twitter: @danaafana

After scoring three goals in the first half, Real Madrid nearly dominated the match against Chelsea FC at The Big House in Ann Arbor on Saturday.

The two fought neck and neck with a close win for Real Madrid of 3-2, in a stadium of 105,826 fans. 

Marcelo kicked off with the first goal in the 18th minute, scoring again seven minutes later. Mariano Diaz brought the team to 3-0 with a shot on the center of the goal before the end of the first half. 

Eden Hazard surprised goalkeeper Ruben Yanez with two shots on target, sweeping the first to the front left corner in the 79th minute and scoring again in the 90th minute. The team, however, was not able to score an equalizer. 

“Eden Hazard played 30 minutes,” Chelsea manager Antonio Conte said in a press conference after the match. “He’s recovering in good shape, I like him in this [forward] position, I think it may be a good solution for us.”

Rumors suggested Eden Hazard would transfer to Real Madrid, but manager Zinedine Zidane mentioned that there are rumors regarding many players potentially linked with this club.

“He’s a very good player and obviously all clubs want the best players but right now he’s a Chelsea player,” Zidane said.

He ensured Morata is back on the team and will remain a Real Madrid player. 

Without the help of Real Madrid’s stars Cristiano Ronaldo, Gareth Bale and Karim Benzema, Marcelo carried the team and was later recognized as the Man of the Match. 

“I think we were better with the ball but bad without the ball,” Conte said. “We weren’t a team in defensive situation.”

“It’s been a joy to watch [Marcelo] play as a captain,” Zidane said. “It’s a captain's job to give an example, overall I’m happy with his match.”

Chelsea defender Matt Miazga said there were moments in the game and during training where they could improve, adding he improved the most on “my communication and being aware of things.” Conte said he has a good attitude and commitment toward the team, and will soon make a decision about Miazga’s future on the team. 

It has also been rumored that Oscar may leave Chelsea, though Conte emphasized all of his players are currently Chelsea players but some will be sent off to other clubs. 

Although Isco showed up to yesterday’s practice, Zidane mentioned he has a small injury after receiving a hard blow or collision, but they plan to prepare him for Wednesday’s match against Bayern Munich. He also said Jese did not play due to discussions for joining another club.

Diego Costa was also said to appear, but Conte indicated it was due to an injury and he may play at their next game against AC Milan. After expressing how it wasn’t easy playing against another great club, he emphasized how important togetherness is for the team.

“My experience in my career [as a] player and manager teaches me that if you want to reach a good target and if you want to win, if you want to fight for the title, you must be a team inside and outside of the pitch.”

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Anonymous said...

Great job Dana!