Football: Barca claim Super Cup on away goals after stalemate

Football: Barca claim Super Cup on away goals after stalemate
Barcelona's Xavi Hernandez celebrates with the trophy after they won the Spanish Super Cup against Atletico Madrid at Camp Nou stadium in Barcelona.

BARCELONA - Barcelona lifted the first silverware of the Spanish season on away goals after a 0-0 draw with Atletico Madrid in the second-leg of the Spanish Super Cup on Wednesday night.

Following the 1-1 draw in the first-leg, the Catalans were left to thank goalkeeper Victor Valdes for preserving their advantage as he pulled off incredible saves from Arda Turan and David Villa either side of half-time.

Barca should have then sealed victory on the night themselves as after Filipe Luis was sent off for Atleti, Lionel Messi fired a late penalty off the bar.

"Victor has always had this characteristic which makes a goalkeeper for a big team," Barca boss Gerardo Martino told a press conference afterwards.

"They had two shots on goal and he made the saves." Martino had handed a first start to Neymar as the Brazilian and Lionel Messi lined up for the first time in a competitive match since the former's switch from Santos.

And he admitted that the South American duo have plenty to work on as a partnership.

"Separately they have played quite well. It is true that they didn't combine a lot and they didn't find each other.

"Neymar was a bit closed off on the wing and when Leo came deep he drifted to the other side. Sometimes they were too far apart to combine but they will manage to do so with time." Having weathered an early Barca early storm though, Atleti started to gain a foothold and had the two best openings of the opening period.

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