The Spanish Supercopa gets underway on Wednesday evening in the second season of the revamped tournament.
From Jeddah to Andalusia
The Spanish FA signed a three-year deal to play the tournament in Saudi Arabia, but the Covid-19 pandemic forced a change of plans for this year.
Malaga and Cordoba are the semi-final locations, with Seville’s La Cartuja stadium the venue for Sunday’s showpiece.
A common theme across football over the past nine months – there will be no fans in the stadiums, despite small numbers of fans being allowed into Spanish FA organised games at a lower level.
Two new teams
There is no Valencia or Atletico Madrid this time round, as they are replaced by Basque duo Athletic Club Bilbao and Real Sociedad – who are yet to contest the 2020 Copa del Rey final.
….and half a new team
Barcelona are almost unrecognisable from last season – new signings Sergino Dest, Pedri and Miralem Pjanic will play a part, while youngsters Oscar Mingueza and Ronald Araujo also hold prominent roles.
No Valverde, or Bartomeu
Blaugrana boss Ernesto Valverde was dismissed after his side’s exit from last season’s competition, while former club president Josep Maria Bartomeu is also gone following his resignation in October.
Madrid with a new strikeforce
Los Blancos won last season’s tournament without Karim Benzema, Eden Hazard or Gareth Bale – Luke Jovic was the sole striker available. Now Benzema, Hazard, Vinicius Junior and Rodrygo Goes are among the mass attacking options at Zinedine Zidane’s disposal.
No Garitano, but with Marcelino
Gaizka Garitano brought Athletic Club to the Copa final and qualification to this tournament but he was sacked earlier this month, so Marcelino Garcia Toral is the man in the dugout for this competition.
La Real, without Odegaard
The Norwegian sensation propelled Real Sociedad to the Copa del Rey final but is now back at Madrid…where he has not featured across the past nine matches.
All images via Marca