However, Real Madrid couldn’t finish the game with a clean sheet. After a brief VAR consultation, a penalty was awarded for Valencia in the stoppage time as the ball kissed Sergio Ramos’ hand. Dani Parejo converted the penalty and was on the score sheet for Valencia.

The stadium of the 62,000-capacity arena was almost full for the first fixture of the competition. Earlier, it used to be a two-legged season curtain-raiser between the Spanish league champions and the Copa del Rey winners but has been given a radical facelift to set off the things in the Middle East which is growing as a footballing power recently.

When Casemiro was asked  whom he would prefer to play in finals, he said:

“It doesn’t matter. We know both are really tough. Atletico Madrid is a difficult game and Barca is too. We’ll have to plan well to win. The next game is always more difficult.”

“We were in complete control throughout the game, we came out with the intention of getting hold of the ball, that’s what we did and our plan worked perfectly,”