A bite out of Real Madrid’s prestige
It was Real Madrid’s worst result in the Bernabéu in their entire history of European competition, which is saying something. The ravaging has no effect on the table: Madrid had already won the group. It didn’t even help CSKA, who were left fourth thanks to Viktoria Plzen’s win over Roma. But the win gives them a shine that won’t fade in a hurry, while Madrid are left to cope with the stain left by this ugly result in the club’s favourite competition. It was like smashing the grandparents’ crockery. There were few pass marks for Madrid’s reserve side, who did such a good job against Melilla, but who were poor and lacking spark against CSKA, without even a note of intensity to try and gloss over the result.
No Navas against CSKA
The game started with the unpleasant surprise that Keylor Navas wouldn’t play. The side was the second choice players, except for Benzema and Marcelo whose substitutes are injured (Mariano and Reguilón) and Courtois. Why has Keylor been banished to the point where’s not even considered for a pointless game? It was an ugly gesture. Madrid though started well, with Vinicius playing well against Akinfeev, but the side's good intentions didn’t last long. CSKA came out looking to cause danger. They played well, going forward intelligently and coming up with several attacking moves against a defensive block lacking aggression. That was enough to go in 0-2 up at half-time.
Worse was yet to come from Real Madrid. When we were waiting for an embarrassed reaction from second choice players who need to fight for their future, yet they did… nothing. To make things worse, Bale came on for Benzema to play as Madrid’s number 9, which isn’t his position, and on top of that he half-injured himself almost straightaway, as is his tendency. The second half was a lethargic affair from Madrid, with only Vinicius playing with pride and ferocity to try and improve the miserable state of affairs. He alone went looking for the ball and faced up to his man. And so it was no surprise when Madrid went 0-3 down. The game portrays every Madrid player in a bad light, but especially Isco and Asensio, the two who were most missed. They were stupendous against Meillia, utterly disappointing this time out.