Real Madrid hosted Sporting Lisbon in the first UEFA Champions League match of the season and, if this game was anything to go by, we’re about to face yet another nerve-wrecking season!

Starting Lineup:

Zinedine Zidane left nothing to chance as he named a very strong starting lineup on the night as the BBC made their first start of the season. The starting lineup consisted of:

Kiko Casilla, Daniel Carvajal, Sergio Ramos [C], Raphael Varane, Marcelo, Carlos Casemiro, Toni Kroos, Luka Modric, Gareth Bale, Cristiano Ronaldo, and Karim Benzema

Scorers:

Real Madrid –
Cristiano Ronaldo (89′)
Alvaro Morata (93′)

Sporting Lisbon –
Bruno Cesar (48′)

Daniel Carvajal:

In my opinion, Dani Carvajal was one of our best players out there on the night. The full-back was always up for the challenge and never gave up. Even at a point where it seemed as though the team were slowly giving up, Carvajal was the man who kept doing everything in his power to make a difference. He continues to show why he’s one of the best right-backs in the world.

Alvaro Morata:

Coming on as a substitute, many were wondering what he could offer that Karim Benzema couldn’t and he showed it. Continuing to fight for a spot in the lineup (and acceptance from a big portion of Real Madrid fans), he came on and was completely ready to show what he’s capable of. Morata’s winning goal in the 93rd minute will prove to be beneficial for him more than anyone else as it could end up being a season defining moment for the Spaniard after struggling to get his name on the scoresheet this season.

morata

James Rodriguez:

Another substitute who came in and had a devastating affect on the game was James Rodriguez as he is doing everything he could to fight for a spot in the starting lineup. He was immediately involved in play and didn’t show any signs of being a substitute as he recognized the pace of the match and matched it brilliantly. His assist to Alvaro Morata was marvelous and I feel like it’s only a matter of time before he forces Zidane to play him from the first minute of the match.

Cristiano Ronaldo:

After recently returning from injury, Cristiano Ronaldo was hopeful of playing the full 90 minutes and we are all more than happy that he did! Zidane trusted that keeping the Portuguese on the pitch would be beneficial and he was proven right after Ronaldo’s great free-kick in the 89th minute got Los Merengues the equalizer! He’s still not at his best but with each passing minute, he is getting there. Since his return, he has been able to score two goals in two games; that’s quite impressive for a man who isn’t anywhere near his best!

My Personal Player Ratings:

Kiko Casilla – 8/10
Daniel Carvajal – 9/10
Sergio Ramos – 7.5/10
Raphael Varane – 7.5/10
Marcelo – 7.5/10
Carlos Casemiro – 7/10
Toni Kroos – 8/10
Luka Modric – 8/10
Gareth Bale – 7/10
Cristiano Ronaldo – 8.5/10
Karim Benzema – 7.5/10

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