On a night in Sevilla, a very mediocre Real Madrid team were fully controlled by an excellent Real Betis.

Jose Mourinho knew that the team he was about to meet are exceeding expectations in the league as they lay in fourth place and took no chances with his starting lineup: Iker Casillas, Alvaro Arbeloa, Pepe, Sergio Ramos, Fabio Coentrao, Xabi Alonso, Sami Khedira, Mesut Ozil, Angel Di Maria, Cristiano Ronaldo, and Karim Benzema.

Nothing was right. Real Betis started off perfectly with some fast playing and catching Real Madrid off-guard. It was the visitors though who got the first chance with Mesut Ozil failing to even find the target. Only 17 minutes in though, Angel Di Maria gave the ball away cheaply and Sami Khedira (apparently losing his defensive capabilities) couldn’t stop Benat from scoring the opener of the game. It took some time, but Real Madrid finally found their footing with a great chance by Di Maria but nothing came out of that one either as the first half ended with the hosts leading.

Jose Mourinho had enough and decided to make two crucial substitutions by taking off Sami Khedira and Mesut Ozil for Luka Modric and Kaka, which made all the difference in the second half. They played a lot better but the finishing was still a major problem. Karim Benzema was finally able to get the equalizer but was incorrectly ruled for offside on the hour mark. Kaka also had a great opportunity, but saw his attempt saved with some beautiful goalkeeping from Adrian. Also, Cristiano Ronaldo took a free kick which saw Adrian show some great goalkeeping reflexes to stop it from going into the back of the net.

Real Betis still came close to scoring a few times though as Real Madrid left some spaces in the back while on the hunt to get the equalizer before it was too late.

Real Madrid will be playing a very anticipated derby against Atletico Madrid next weekend, with this one proving to be one of the most difficult in recent years since Atletico find themselves comfortably in second place for the first time in a very, very long time. This game against Real Betis wasn’t exactly the perfect way to get ready for it but nothing less than a win against Atletico Madrid will be acceptable in a week’s time.

Real Madrid will need to step up their game as they have failed to do so many times this season. Mourinho will need to find a way to motivate his players again to take them back to how they were last season because that is our only hope if we are to hang on to the extremely slim chance to get to the top of the table this year…

 

La Liga Points and Ranks:

1. Barcelona – 37 Points
2. Atletico Madrid – 34 Points
3. Real Madrid – 26 Points
4. Malaga – 22 Points
5. Real Betis – 22 Points
6. Levante – 20 Points
7. Getafe – 19 Points
8. Rayo Vallecano – 19 Points
9. Real Valladolid – 18 Points
10. Sevilla – 18 Points
11. Valencia – 18 Points
12. Real Soceidad – 17 Points
13. Real Zaragoza – 15 Points
14. Athletic Bilbao – 15 Points
15. Real Mallorca – 12 Points
16. Celta Vigo – 11 Points
17. Deportivo La Coruna – 11 Points
18. Granada – 11 Points
19. Osasuna – 10 Points
20. Espanyol – 9 Points

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