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No. 50: Emre Can, Liverpool

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By ESPN Staff

Benzema bullish over Supercopa

Striker Karim Benzema is confident Real Madrid can strike the first blow of the season against fierce rivals Barcelona and win the Spanish Supercopa at the Nou Camp on Wednesday night.

• Barca hold Real in Supercopa

Real head to Catalonia for the second leg after being held to a 2-2 home draw by Barca on Sunday. Jose Mourinho's side were, however, the dominant team on their home turf as Barca were cast into an unfamiliar role of playing on the break.

That tactic almost worked with David Villa and Lionel Messi netting after Mesut Ozil's opener, but Xabi Alonso claimed a deserved equaliser for Madrid to enthuse Benzema.

"This is a title that you want to win and the first leg leaves us with plenty of optimism,'' the France international told AS. "It was a very enjoyable game and I think the fans would have liked what they saw on the pitch.

"Two great teams did battle but in all honesty I think Madrid clearly deserved to win. Many things have changed from last season. We had a monopoly on possession and we did not let them play.

"That is exactly what you must do against a team like Barca. We now know that we are more than capable of winning tomorrow and lifting the Supercopa. I am sure that the second leg will be an open game and we will go for victory.''

Benzema's first-leg performance was notable for the amount of defensive work he was employed to do. There have been rumours in the past that he has not always been pleased with his role under Mourinho, however, the 23-year-old said he was happy to do whatever was asked of him.

"I've said several times that I have never had any problems with Mourinho,'' he added. "I have spoken to him and now I understand perfectly what is expected of me.

"I defended a lot (in the first leg). It was all planned in the tactical scheme decided by the coach. He asked to push hard up front to slow the ball. I think we did well.''

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