After Barcelona and Atletico Madrid both got three points in the matches, Real Madrid didn’t disappoint as they came out with a 3-0 win to stay one point behind both teams.
With some injuries to the squad, Zinedine Zidane had to make a few rotations, which all paid off in the end. The starting lineup consisted of:
Keylor Navas, Danilo, Raphael Varane, Sergio Ramos [C], Marcelo, Carlos Casemiro, Toni Kroos, Luka Modric, Lucas Vazquez, Cristiano Ronaldo, and Karim Benzema
Real Madrid –
Karim Benzema (41′)
Lucas Vazquez (69′)
Luka Modric (74′)
This was the first time that Danilo starts ever since receiving major criticism for his performance against Wolfsburg in the UEFA Champions League and it looks like he still needs quite some time to regain his confidence. The first half was very poor for the Brazilian right-back as he ended it with a yellow card for a foul that wasn’t even committed by him! In the second 45 minutes though, he looked a little more confident and there was clear improvement as he also got a great assist for Luka Modric’s goal.
What a beautiful night for Luka Modric! The Croatian midfielder controlled his position brilliantly and made some beautiful plays on the night that kept Real Madrid dangerous throughout the ninety minutes. As if that wasn’t enough, he got his name on the scoresheet to make it 3-0 to the hosts as well!
There is no denying that this wasn’t the greatest night for Cristiano Ronaldo as there were times where he seemed to be more focused on the Pichichi race rather than making the right choices in the match. Overall though, he made some great runs and helped quite a lot in defense as well. Towards the end of the match, after attempting a bicycle kick, he went off the pitch with an injury that doesn’t seem to be too serious. Most people are expecting him to be fit for the upcoming match against Rayo Vallecano on Saturday.
Lucas Vazquez is a player who has continued to show a lot of promise and was able to get a rare start against Villarreal. Needless to say, the Spanish winger did not disappoint with his runs and, of course, an extremely well-taken goal. His explosive runs to help Real Madrid’s counter-attacks were a joy to watch and the fans really enjoyed it as he was substituted in the 84th minute with a standing ovation from the Santiano Bernabeu.
My Personal Player Ratings:
Keylor Navas: 8/10
Raphael Varane: 8.5/10
Sergio Ramos: 8.5/10
Carlos Casemiro: 8/10
Toni Kroos: 9/10
Luka Modric: 10/10
Lucas Vazquez: 9.5/10
Cristiano Ronaldo: 7/10
Karim Benzema: 7/10