Spanish Super Cup – Sevilla 1 Barcelona 2
Lionel Messi lifted his first trophy as the new Barcelona captain – his record breaking 33rd as a Barca player – as Ernesto Valverde’s team won the Spanish Super Cup beating Sevilla 2-1. Pablo Machin’s stint as Sevilla boss could not have started better when his namesake Pablo Sarabia gave the underdogs the lead inside 10 minutes, rounding off a slick counter attack with a right-footed strike. Pique pulled Barcelona level before the break after pouncing on the rebound from Messi’s free-kick, which hit the post.
The second half threw up several chances for Sevilla to clinch a rare victory against the Catalans. Then came Ousmane Dembele with a belter of a strike from the edge of the penalty area, drilling an unstoppable strike into the top corner to score the goal that won the game. A piece of pure individual brilliance. The drama wasn’t over there. The Andalusian side had a golden chance from the spot to clinch extra time in stoppage time when Marc-Andre ter Stegen brought down ex-Barcelona youth player Aleix Vidal. But the German goalkeeper redeemed himself, standing his ground to smother a weak penalty by Wissam Ben Yedder. That would ensure Barcelona won the curtain-raiser for the sixth time in nine pre-seasons.
Lionel Messi has become Barcelona’s most-decorated player of all time after the 2-1 victory over Sevilla in the Spanish Super Cup on Sunday evening. The Argentine has now won a staggering 33 trophies for Barcelona – one more than Andres Iniesta who won 32 during his time at Camp Nou before he joined Japanese side Vissel Kobe in May. The win against Sevilla in Morocco was Messi’s eighth victory in the Spanish Super Cup since he made his debut.
German Super Cup – Eintracht Frankfurt 0 Bayern Munich 5
Bayern Munich thrashed Eintracht Frankfurt 5-0 to clinch the DFL Super Cup title in Frankfurt on Sunday night, with Robert Lewandowski netting a hat-trick. Kingsley Coman and Thiago Alcantara rounded off the scoring. It was a revenge of sorts for Bayern, who were beaten 3-1 by Frankfurt in last season’s German Cup final.
Kovac was back at the club he saved from relegation after taking over in 2016 and led to successive German Cup finals. He won the cup at the second attempt in his final game at Frankfurt in May to deny his future club Bayern the double. Frankfurt fans gave the 46-year-old Kovac a respectful reception on his return.
Lewandowski’s future at Bayern has been the subject of major speculation this summer, but manager Niko Kovac has said the club “certainly won’t let him leave”. Bayern do not begin their Bundesliga defence until 24 August when they host Hoffenheim. Before that they face Drochtersen/Assel in the German Cup on 18 August, while Frankfurt travel to Ulm in the same competition.
PSG 3 Caen 0
Neymar needed a mere 10 minutes to open his Ligue 1 account for Paris Saint-Germain on Sunday. The world’s most expensive player put Les Parisiens in front in a 3-0 win over Caen at the Parce des Princes.
Adrien Rabiot doubled the lead before halftime after being teed up by Angel Di Maria. Later, substitute Timothy Weah, who replaced Neymar on 81 minutes, capitalised on a mistake from Caen goalkeeper Brice Samba to score his first Ligue 1 goal and ensure manager Thomas Tuchel and goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon made winning starts in a league PSG won at a canter a season ago. Italian keeper Gianluigi Buffon, making his debut for the club at 40 after his move from Juventus, showed lightning reflexes to prevent Thiago Silva scoring a spectacular own-goal just before half-time but was otherwise a virtual spectator.
Cristiano Ronaldo scores after just eight minutes in Juventus colours
Cristiano Ronaldo took just eight minutes to score his first Juventus goal as he pulled on the famous jersey for the first time. The Portuguese superstar joined the Serie A champions last month in a stunning £88million move from Real Madrid. He was given extra time off following his run to the last-16 of the World Cup with Portugal. But he made his debut today in the club’s traditional pre-season friendly against the B team in Villar Perosa. Ronaldo latched on to a long ball from Federico Bernardeschi before composing himself and slotting the ball home. He then forced Riccardo Capellini into putting the ball into his own net. A Paulo Dybala double had the first team cruising before Claudio Marchissio added a fifth. Then as is tradition, the crowd poured on to the pitch, signalling the end of the friendly after 70 minutes…