Atlético de Madrid
International Champions Cup '19
BATTLE OF THE MADRIDS
In our very own backyard in New Jersey is Metlife Stadium in East Rutherford, where Atletico Madrid and Real Madrid faced off for the first time outside of Europe EVER. The NJ/NY area is heavily populated with Real Madrid fans due to some of the most high profile players in the world and the high hispanic density. So naturally, the attendance and energy turned out to be huge. No one in their right mind would have dreamt of missing this match, including the Just Kick It team. This game felt more exciting than any the other game we've been to due to the rivalry that already exists between the two teams since the early 1900s. This rivalry, El Derbi, is one of the top 10 rivalries in the world! With that said, once ICC released the schedule for the 2019 and we saw this match.....we knew we couldn't miss this game. If you're like us this matchup was considered the game of the tournament. With both two powerhouses, wanting to display their new to strengthen their squad.
METLIFE STADIUM - EAST RUTHERFORD
EVEN OUTSIDE OF SPAIN, IT IS ALL BLOOD AND WAR
The atmosphere in the stadium was electrifying - this wasn't a game for the faint of heart. What made this event recognized on a global scale was not only the numerous individuals in attendance. This was a galactic match presented by ICC was designed to provided us, the fans, with a match unlike no other. As you could expect from any great derby, there were goals, confrontations, lots of fouls which included several yellow cards, and two red cards.
As soon as it started, you could feel the intensity in the air. Diego Costa drew first blood in the first minute of the game and that ruffled the feathers of the reconstructing Real Madrid. As the game went on, it didn't matter that they weren't in Spain, Atletico Madrid came to play ball as they scored 7 minutes later making it 2-0. By the time the 1st half ended, the score was 5-0 Atletico Madrid. It was difficult to watch Real Madrid, who has won majority of El Debri matches till date trail behind so badly. When the 2nd half kicked off, Real Madrid substituted over 50% of their players included Courtois for Navas. There was a different Real Madrid on the field that was very unforgiving and at this point is when some fights broke out, which led to the suspensions of Diego Costa and Daniel Carvajal.
NAVAS VS COURTOIS
In the first half, Courtois was in goal and allowed in 5 goals. By the end of the game, the end score was 7 Atletico Madrid - 3 Real Madrid, meaning Navas only allowed in 2 goals during his time on the field. There could be many variables like the loss of Diego Costa or Joao Felix getting subbed off and Bale getting subbed on, but just the composure of both players is completely different. Navas was always calm and collected, which allowed him to assess the situation presented to him under high pressure. Courtois on occasions relies on his height to defend balls which doesn't seem to be working for him since taking the starting position from Navas. There was a great amount of money spent on Courtois when he forced his move from Chelsea to Real Madrid and fans are still expecting a return on the large investment made, including us. With Zidane back, Madridistas hope to see Navas return to a starting position as his performance over the years has proved consistent despite aging and being older than Courtois.
JOAO FELIX - BOY WONDER
A game worthy of being called El Debri has a new player in its midst - Joao Felix. Joao Felix was signed this summer for 126 Million Euros (142 Million US Dollars) from Benfica at the age of 19. Many disputed that it was too much for someone his age when the news broke, but if you watched this match, no one is thinking that anymore. Diego Costa's opening goal in the first minute of the game was assisted by none other than the boy wonder. Only 7 minutes later, he scored himself and assisted one more goal later in the game. In a short period of time of training and playing with the team, he has such great creative energy behind the ball to assist and score himself. He is extremely dynamic and quick on the ball. We know this is only preseason, but we are excited to see what he is capable of now that he has joined a team that has made it to the Champions League finals in recent years and have been performing amazingly in La Liga. Think he can help them lift a Champions League or La Liga trophy? Send us your opinions on Instagram or email us.
Living in the US but haven't been to an International Champions Cup (ICC) match?
If you live in the US and love international soccer, ICC provides US residents the opportunity to see teams like Arsenal, Real Madrid, Atletico Madrid, Barcelona, etc. While the 2019 tournament is over for men and women, make sure you get your tickets early next year. We have been going to these games since the inauguration of this cup and they have only gotten better with time! More teams, greater match ups, and an unforgettable experience.