Carlo Ancelotti made his debut as Real Madrid manager in La Liga today as they hosted Real Betis in a game that was more difficult than one could have initially expected.
Since there is a new beginning to the season, I thought of trying to change things up a little bit on my blog. Usually, I would write a post-game report and add my own opinion at the end but decided that maybe I should change it a little bit. Instead, I’ll be trying “Post-Game Observations” where I will be putting things such as the starting lineup and the scorers but adding points that I feel are worth mentioning. After all that, I will add the player ratings at the end of my post.
I hope you all like it, feel free to comment and let me know what you think!
The Italian manager chose to start with Diego Lopez and leave Iker Casillas on the bench while giving Isco and Daniel Carvajal their debuts as starters, and Carlos Casemiro as a substitute. The starting lineup consisted of:
Diego Lopez, Daniel Carvajal, Pepe, Sergio Ramos [C], Marcelo, Sami Khedira, Luka Modric, Isco, Mesut Ozil, Cristiano Ronaldo, Karim Benzema
Whether it was the right choice of starters isn’t the question really. No matter how much anyone loves our captain, Iker Casillas, you cannot deny that Diego Lopez also deserves that starting spot. He has come out with some unbelievable performances since returning to Real Madrid and, as the season goes on, it will be very interesting to see how things plan out between the two goalkeepers.
Real Madrid –
Karim Benzema (26′)
Real Betis –
Jorge Molina (14′)
Isco Gets His Debut Goal:
What a way to end the game by the new signing. During the match, Isco was always there to be seen and was even able to assist the goal by Karim Benzema. To top it all off, with only four minutes left and the score tied at 1-1, it was the young Spanish midfielder who secured a beautiful header from a Marcelo cross to make it 2-1 and get all three points for Los Merengues. A day to remember for Isco…
The Curious Case Of Karim Benzema:
Karim Benzema didn’t have the greatest of seasons last year and it doesn’t seem like it will end anytime soon. True, he scored a very well-placed goal, but I’m not here to judge him on his quality as a finisher but rather on the lack of competition he has which is clearly affecting his performances.
During the past couple seasons, the French International had another world-class player competing against him, Gonzalo Higuain. After Higuain left to Napoli, it now seems as though he feels like he will have his place no matter how he performs weekly since his only competition at the moment is Alvaro Morata, who is a great young attacker but simply needs more experience. Karim Benzema needs to fix his performances because they can honestly end up hurting the team as time goes on.
Carlo Ancelotti Still Unbeaten:
Ever since he has been named as Real Madrid manager, Carlo Ancelotti is yet to lose a game. He has been able to beat Paris Saint-Germain, LA Galaxy, Chelsea, Bournemouth, Inter Milan, and Real Betis while getting a draw against Lyon. They were all preseason games (Except for the one against Real Betis) but it will be giving him great confidence for the league.
Real Madrid can consider themselves slightly lucky to be coming out of the game with all three points as there were times where things could have easily gone another way. There is no doubt that improvement will be needed in the coming weeks as this all will only get harder. It is still early and there is time to improve but Los Merengues will need to do it soon or risk falling behind very early in the campaign.
My Personal Player Ratings:
Diego Lopez – 8.5/10
Daniel Carvajal – 7/10
Pepe – 7.5/10
Sergio Ramos – 7/10
Marcelo – 8.5/10
Sami Khedira – 7.5/10
Luka Modric – 8/10
Mesut Ozil – 8/10
Isco – 9/10
Cristiano Ronaldo – 8/10
Karim Benzema – 7.5/10
Carlos Casemiro – 7/10
Angel Di Maria – 8/10
Alvaro Morata – N/A