There are such disparate soccer posters that, in principle, this Cup final refers to a major party for Osasuna and an office day for Real Madrid. In the Seville tureen (La 1, 10:00 p.m.), the second final for the rojillos and the 40th for the whites. Wolves against lambs?
It happens that the domestic Cup does not fully gel with the madridistas. An eloquent fact: since the first European Cup (1956), Real has conquered 14 orejonas for 10 Spanish cupbearer thrones. And even more: three European finals out of 17 the Chamartín club have lost and in 20 of the last 39 local rounds they have gone through the cat flap. All in all, the favoritism of the current League and Champions League champions can only be diminished by the spirit of the always boar Osasuna, today more than ever ready to end with his heart on his bones in a San Fermin day like almost no other in the entity’s history pamplonica.
In La Cartuja, where at 10 o’clock at night the heat of a Seville on the brink of twilight (with highs above 30 degrees) will have subsided somewhat, Real and Osasuna will challenge each other like never before in an unprecedented date. Their piques have not been few, especially in El Sadar, but they never had a terminal duel with a title at stake. Osasuna before a lunar feat; Real Madrid, forced by its legendary echo.
The 2005 final lost to Betis remains far away for the rojillo team. And getting to La Cartuja has meant considerable wear and tear with four extensions along the way. Madrid has also had a mined tour, with pulses with Villarreal, Atlético and Barça. “We are from Navarra and nothing scares us,” said David García, Osasunista captain, on Friday. A successor to Julián Vergara, Zabalza, Iriguibel, Enrique Martín, Puñal, Urban, Robinson… “We are a family and our strength is in the group,” slipped Jagoba Arrasate, the coach, convinced of how important it will be to “make Madrid uncomfortable for Let there be an end.”
“The only option to win will be to play a perfect game,” concluded the Basque coach, with the entire squad available, except for winger Nacho Vidal. “We don’t see ourselves as favourites, we already saw a few days ago how Osasuna held out with 10 at the Camp Nou,” said Carvajal. “In the face of a final I always think it could be my last, so let’s enjoy it,” said Carlo Ancelotti, who did not seem concerned about his future. The Italian coach valued Modric’s good physical sensations, who will play “if he feels comfortable”, and gave Alaba the starting position.
Not only Osasuna will be the great novelty in the Seville stadium. The final will have the semi-automatic offside, a system already used in the recent World Cup in Qatar.
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