Real Madrid claimed their first trophy under Jose Mourinho when Cristiano Ronaldo’s dramatic extra-time winner secured a 1-0 King’s Cup final victory over arch-rivals Barcelona.
With penalties looming in a tense and occasionally physical cup final, Ronaldo rose above Adriano in the 103rd-minute, to power in Ángel Di María’s excellent cross following an exchange of passes with Marcelo on the left.
The first half was a very tactical and physical half and the closest either team came to scoring was when Real Madrid’s Pepe hit the inside of the post with a header after 43 minutes.
Barçelona, winners of the competition 25 times, came more into the game in the second half and were denied three times in quick succession by Iker Casillas. The Spain captain denied Lionel Messi, Pedro Rodríguez and, finally, Andrés Iniesta with a spectacular tip around the post.
At the other end, it took a great save from Pinto, in the Barcelona goal, from Di María’s goal-bound shot to send the game into extra time.
This is the second of four meetings between the two sides in 18 days and from the first two, it is apparent that Real Madrid are content to be physical with Barcelona and hit them on the counter-attack.
Mourinho has won the first two meetings of the four with Guardiola. It will be interesting to see what the Barca coach does to counter the “Special One’s” tactics.