09 August 2012
Fernando Porrero(Nueva York)
Real Madrid returned to New York for the first time in 11 years and discovered that they have even more pull than last time. Yankee Stadium became a mini replica of the Bernabéu, where team chants could be heard, which surprised a few people. It helped, Mourinho’s players feel at home and overthrew a Milan team that could only keep pace during in the first half. Ronaldo scored twice, and Di María, with a goal and a sensational performance, were the stand out players for a Real Madrid team who dazzled spectators whilst playing, without a doubt, the best match of their pre-season. The Whites leave New York having put on a spectacle and having scored five goals.
Mourinho opted out for the a front three made up of Di María, who was returning after not playing against Santos in Las Vegas due to injury niggles, Özil and Cristiano Ronaldo, who was the player that caused the most excitement in this country. In the hole, the Portuguese opted for Benzema. They came up against a Milan side in the process of rebuilding the squad but with enough craft and skills to defend the prestige of the Italian club. The Whites began the match in complete control of the ball. In the 7th minute came the first opportunity for Real Madrid in the form of Khedira, but his shot from distance did not trouble Abbiati. The Italians did their best to defend against the Real Madrid onslaught. In the 10th minute Pepe had a chance to make it 1-0 but his shot from inside the area deflected off of a defender.
Real Madrid were in complete control of the match. Lass, in the 14th minute, shot wide from outside the box, as did Benzema in the 18th minute. Milan were at the mercy of the Whites. Robinho was the only player who gave the Whites’ defence something to worry about, where a spectacular Pepe was enough to thwart any of Milan’s efforts. Di María had a clear chance in the 22nd minute but his shot was well blocked by Abbiati. It was just a matter of time for the goal to come. In the 24th minute Abbiati punched the ball clear and the ball fell to Di María in front of goal and the Argentine connected with a volley about which the Milan goalkeeper could do nothing. 1-0 and the Whites justifiably went ahead on the scoreboard.
But as in the match against Santos, a defensive lapse gave the Milan the chance to level the score in the 32nd minute following a nice piece of play between Nocerino and Robinho who put the ball in the back of the net with a first time shot. 1-1 following the Italian team's first shot on goal. In the 36th minute Ronaldo could have made it 2-1, but Abbiati kept out the shot with his knees. The Whites did not show signs of being rocked and continued in search of the second before the break. But the goal gave Milan confidence, and they began to defend better and look to counter attack. In the 43rd minute Di María had a chance for the second, but again Abbiati made the save. Half time arrived with no further action.
The second half began as none have this pre-season. For the first time Mourinho did not change the whole eleven. He only made four half time substitutions. Ramos, Alonso, Arbeloa and Higuaín came on for Nacho, Varane, Khedira and Benzema. In the 49th minutes Ronaldo scored a screamer, and bringing the house down. A great piece of play from Lass was topped by a sensational shot from the Portuguese which flew into the back of Amelia's goal. 2-1. Real Madrid were back ahead. But the Whites did not want a repeat of what happened in the first half and looked for the third.
In the 60th minutes Kaká y Callejón came on to the field for Di María and Özil. The Brazilian was greeted by the crowd with an ovation. Two minutes later Gonzalo Higuaín had a chance to make it 3-1 but his powerful shot crashed back off of the crossbar. Real Madrid absolute dominated, but could not close out the game. In the 65th they made the scoreline 3-1 with a sensational move between Higuaín, Kaká and Ronaldo, which finished with a goal for the Portuguese. The second of the match for him. The move was exceptional and the Brazilian's pass to Cristiano masterful. Now, Real Madrid had managed to put the match out of reach for Milan. The crowd, which filled the Yankee Stadium, celebrated the goal in style. Milan could do very little against the barrage of play and chances created by Mourinho’s team.
In the 70th minute Lass good game came to an end as he went off for Granero and Pepe was taken off for Albiol. The Portuguese’s named was chanted following his replacement. The match entered a messy phase of with the Real Madrid pushing forward against a Milan side unable to do much about it. In the 74th minutes Coentrão came off for Sahin. In the 79th minute Ronaldo was replaced by Morata and took the biggest ovation of the night. The Portuguese was, along with Di María, the best players in the match. The academy player nearly made the score 4-1 with his first touch of the first ball but his shot was pushed wide for a corner by Amelia. That corner finished with a headed goal from Ramos, sealing the win. With six minutes left Jesús came on for the much lauded Casillas. But the party had not finished and Callejón got Real Madrid fifth with a great assist from Kaká in the 88th minute. This led to the end of the match. On Saturday, in Philadelphia, the last match of the tour match against Celtic and then back home.