Real Madrid’s impressive comeback against AC Milan showcased their resilience and determination in preseason. The team utilized their new signings and made tactical adjustments to secure the victory. Milan also had notable contributions from Christian Pulisic, who started the match and provided an assist. Both teams will continue their preparations for the upcoming season with additional fixtures in the US before returning to league action.
Real Madrid staged an impressive second-half comeback to defeat AC Milan 3-2 in their preseason friendly in Pasadena, California. The match, held at the Rose Bowl, saw Milan take a commanding 2-0 lead through goals from Fikayo Tomori and Luka Romero. However, Madrid fought back with two quickfire goals from Federico Valverde, before Vinicius Junior sealed the victory with an 83rd-minute strike.
The match marked the first preseason friendly of Madrid’s US tour, and head coach Carlo Ancelotti included new signings Jude Bellingham, Joselu, and Brahim Diaz in the starting lineup. Fran Garcia and Arda Guler were also involved, with the latter missing out due to muscular discomfort. Ancelotti made second-half substitutions, bringing on Vinicius and Rodrygo Goes to bolster the attack.
Valverde’s goal to bring Madrid level was crucial in the team’s eventual victory. The midfielder expressed his motivation to continue winning for the club, jokingly referring to Ancelotti’s expectation of double-figure goals from him this season. Valverde’s performance showcased his potential impact in the upcoming campaign.
The match also featured United States winger Christian Pulisic, who started for Milan and registered an assist for Tomori’s opening goal. Pulisic was later replaced by Rafael Leao in the 70th minute. The game saw Madrid adopt a new 4-4-2 formation with a midfield diamond, with Bellingham operating behind Diaz and Joselu. Ancelotti approved of the tactical shift but acknowledged the need for some adjustments, particularly in playing out from the back.
The match had a worrying incident at the beginning when ESPN analyst Shaka Hislop collapsed on the field and required medical attention. However, Hislop’s condition stabilized, and he was conscious and communicating with medics after receiving treatment at the stadium.
The victory for Madrid sets them up for further pre-season fixtures. They are scheduled to face Manchester United on Wednesday followed by a preseason El Clasico against Barcelona on July 29 in Arlington, Texas. Their final match in the US will be against Juventus on August 2.
Milan, on the other hand, continues their preseason tour in the US with upcoming matches against Juventus on Thursday and Barcelona on August 1. They will then prepare for their Serie A campaign, with their first league fixture scheduled against Bologna on August 21.