Real Madrid victorious against Deportivo Alaves
July 10, 2020.
Real Madrid make it eight wins out of eight following their 2-0 win against Deportivo Alaves
Starting XI: Thibaut Courtois, Lucas Vasquez, Eder Militao, Rapahel Varane, Ferland Mendy, Casemiro, Luka Modric, Toni Kroos, Marco Asensio, Rodrygo Goes, Karim Benzema (C)
Real Madrid started their eighth match back from the break with a 4-3-3 setup against the seventeenth placed Deportivo Alaves. Zinedine Zidane had a few headaches to deal with in his backline.
Dani Carvajal and Sergio Ramos were both suspended for the match, and Marcelo got injured during practice and will miss the rest of the season. Zidane decided to start Lucas Vasquez in the right-back position and paired Eder Militao and Raphael Varane in the center with Ferland Mendy on the left.
Toni Kroos was back in the starting elven, while the trio of Marco Asensio, Rodrygo Goes, and Karim Benzema retained their spots.
The match starts with lots of pace and intensity. Mendy puts the ball in towards the six-yard box, but Alaves' goalkeeper Roberto Jiminez punches it away only for Luka Modric's shot following a pull-back from Vasquez is blocked at the edge of the box.
A minuter later, Joselu's header hits the crossbar, and the rebound effort gets cleared off the line.
Mendy gets brought down inside the box following an excellent run and gets the penalty. Benzema steps up with Ramos suspended and puts the ball in the back of the net to give Los Blancos the lead. The first ten minute of the match was an excellent end to end battle between the Merengues and Alaves.
Toni Kroos takes a shot at goal from outside the box, but his effort goes inches over the bar.
Real Madrid's left-back drives into the box with another top run and squares it for Asensio. The ball gets deflected by Adrian Marin towards his own goal, but Jiminez parries it away to safety.
On the other end, Oliver Burke cuts from the left and to his right foot for a shot towards the far post. Thibaut Courtois gets down well and makes a great save.
Oliver Burker, once again, in action as he ingeniously gets past Militao on the byline and pulls the ball back for Joselu. The Alaves forward, however, loses his balance and kicks the ball wide.
Right before the end of the half, Rodrygo sets up Benzema for a shot at goal, but the Frenchman's effort is hit straight at Jiminez.
Halftime (Real Madrid 1 - 0 Deportivo Alaves)
Real Madrid came out of the blocks with purpose and looked better than they were in the first half. They were quicker and looked sharper with the ball.
Rodrygo brilliantly got past his marker in the middle of the park and snuck a through pass to send Benzema on a clear run towards goal. The French forward squared the ball to an open Asensio who tapped the ball past Jiminez into the back of the net.
The play was initially called offside, but the decision got reversed when the VAR review showed Benzema to be onside. Los Blancos were 2-0 up, and Asensio bagged his second goal fo the season.
Asensio's dazzling run gets him away from a couple of defenders before the Spaniard lays the ball off to Benzema. The Real Madrid No.9 takes a touch and shoots at goal, but Jiminez makes a diving save.
Moments later, Rodrygo dribbles inside the box from the left and takes a shot at goal. Jiminez, once again, makes a great save to deny Los Blancos their third goal.
On the other end, a poor pass from Benzema allows Luis Roja to intercept and pass the ball to Joselu inside the box. The Alaves striker takes a shot at goal from the left of the box, but Courtois makes a crucial save to keep the score at 2-0.
Vinicius Junior and Fede Valverde came in to replace Asensio and Modric in the 70th minute.
Rodrygo looked lively, and his runs created all kinds of trouble for the Alaves. He pounces on a ball from Vinicius on the right side of the goal and takes a shot. His effort gets saved by Jiminez.
Eden Hazard and Isco enters the fray with nine minutes left on the clock to replace Benzema and Rodrygo.
Isco hits a beautiful curling effort towards goal, but Jiminez is up to the task and punches it away, taking his tally to seven saves for the match.
Final Score (Real Madrid 2 - 0 Deportivo Alaves)
Real Madrid started the match slowly but grew into the game. They were much better in the second half, and the front three looked fluid and fun to watch. It was an excellent performance overall with some outstanding performances.
The win against Alaves takes Real Madrid four points clear at the top. They have won eight straight games and need five points from the remaining three games to win the league.
Three Stars of the Match
Karim Benzema: He was at his best. The majority of Los Blancos' attacks ran through him. He scored the penalty and assisted Asensio for the Merengues' second goal.
Marco Asensio: He had a timid first half with only 12 touches. However, he came alive in the second half and moved around the final third with purpose. Scored Real Madrid's second goal and had three key passes.
Rodrygo: The Brazillian winger as relentless on the left-wing. He looked comfortable playing from the left and ran riot at Alaves' defense. He completed six dribbles and was involved in Los Blancos' second goal.