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Real Madrid returns to Santiago Bernabeu with a win

Real
Madrid
had
been
redeveloping
Santiago
Bernabeu
in
the
past
one-and-a
half
year,
and
were
playing
their
home
matches
at
the
Alfredo
di
Stefano
stadium
during
the
interregnum.

For
the
first
time
in
a
year
and
a
half,
there
was
matchday
buzz
in
the
Chamartin
area
of
Madrid
and
Benzeme
made
it
on
occasion
to
remember
for
the
Madristas.

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Bernabeu
has
not
hosted
any
event
since
Real
Madrid
defeated
archrivals
Barcelona
2-0
in
the
El
Clasico
on
March
1,
2020/

When
the
coronavirus
(COVID-19)
pandemic
struck,
temporarily
halting
the
football
calendar
and
then
preventing
fans
from
attending
matches,
Real
Madrid
decided
to
bring
forward
the
redevelopment
work
that
they
had
planned
for
the
Bernabeu.

If
no
football
stadium
was
going
to
be
able
to
host
supporters
for
a
significant
period
of
time,
Real
Madrid
concluded
that
it
made
sense
to
use
that
time
to
start
with
the
construction
work
that
they
had
planned
to
carry
out
over
the
next
several
off-seasons.

As
such,
Los
Blancos
fulfilled
their
final
few
2019-20
home
fixtures
and
all
of
their
2020-21
home
matches
at
the
Estadio
Alfredo
Di
Stefano
in
their
Valdebebas
training
complex.
This
was
the
stadium
that
had
been
used
by
the
B
team
and,
even
if
it’s
a
smaller
ground,
it
is
a
state-of-the-art
venue
that
has
14
booths
for
TV
and
radio,
dozens
more
seats
for
the
written
press
and
a
media
centre.
There
was
enough
space
for
up
to
30
cameras
to
be
installed,
meaning
that
the
broadcasts
of
Real
Madrid’s
LaLiga
Santander
matches
were
still
of
the
highest
quality.

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During
their
brief
stay
at
the
Estadio
Alfredo
Di
Stefano,
Real
Madrid
clinched
the
2019/20
LaLiga
Santander
title,
as
well
as
winning
important
fixtures
such
as
ElClásico
or
the
Madrid
derby.
In
total,
including
matches
in
all
competitions,
Los
Blancos
played
31
home
fixtures
in
Valdebebas
between
football’s
return
and
now,
for
a
record
of
23
wins,
four
draws
and
four
defeats.

That
made
for
a
win
percentage
of
74%,
only
slightly
below
Real
Madrid’s
all-time
home
win
percentage
of
77%.
Now,
after
playing
their
first
three
fixtures
of
the
2021/22
LaLiga
Santander
season
on
the
road,
it’s
finally
time
for
Los
Blancos’ homecoming
and,
even
if
there
is
still
limited
capacity
due
to
the
remaining
coronavirus
restrictions
and
the
fact
that
fans
are
returning
gradually,
there
is
great
excitement
ahead
of
this
weekend’s
clash
with
RC
Celta
Vigo.

Summer
signings
David
Alaba
and
Eduardo
Camavinga
will
be
able
to
experience
the
home
support
of
the
Bernabéu
for
the
first
time,
while
other
stars
such
as
Karim
Benzema,
Luka
Modrić
and
Toni
Kroos
can
savour
the
cheers
of
their
fanbase
for
the
first
time
in
over
18
months.

Construction
work
is
still
taking
place
at
the
stadium,
as
the
redevelopment
project
is
a
significant
one
and
won’t
be
finished
for
some
time
yet.
However,
Real
Madrid
have
been
able
to
accelerate
the
process
as
they
construct
what
club
president
Florentino
Pérez
has
said
will
be
“the
best
stadium
in
the
world”.

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The
new-look
Bernabéu
will
bring
increased
security,
comfort
and
accessibility
for
fans,
while
it
will
also
boast
a
new
roof,
a
new
exterior
and
new
spaces,
such
as
convention
rooms,
stores,
car
parking
and
a
new
interactive
museum.
Most
importantly,
it’ll
have
the
special
atmosphere
that
exists
at
Real
Madrid
matches,
starting
from
this
Sunday.

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