LEVANTE 0- 2 REAL MADRID
Real Madrid player ratings vs Levante: Courtois to Benzema
The team gelled beautifully at times, although they also had to rely on some sound goalkeeping from their big Belgian, but two goals saw them win on the road.
It was by no means a walk in the Estadio la Cerámica, but goals from Vinicius and Karim Benzema - along with some very necessary interventions from Thibaut Courtois in goal - were enough to secure three points and put Los Blancos top of the LaLiga table...at least for a short while.
Here's how the whole game happened and below is a summary of how the players performed:
Real Madrid player ratings
Courtois: Real Madrid's best player in the early games of the season. By some distance. He made three very worthwhile saves: punching Bardhi missile, blocking deflection with his foot and closes down well against Clerc.
Nacho: Yet another solid game from the definition of a club player. It was definitely more comfortable for him in the first half than in the second, when Levante pushed on more. On the half-hour mark he made an important challenge on Vukcevic to kill the chance.
Ramos: A clean sheet for the captain and his defence. His headed goal was ruled out for offside. That VAR decision was as close as they come.
Varane: Great in the first half, in which he kept Morales at bay whenever the forward looked interested. In the second half he dedicated himself, like Ramos, to stopping the increased pressing from Levante.
Mendy: The Frenchman showed the physical nature of his game - it is very difficult to get away from him - but he also has a valuable role to play going forward. A great connection with Benzema.
Valverde: After a decent first half his levels seemed to drop and the whole team retreated with him. Needs more drive.
Casemiro: Lacking some fitness which was evident from his second half performance. He was still a main cog in the white wheel and played most of the game on a yellow tightrope, which he wobbled on midway through the second 45.
Modric: Gave a reminder of why he was a Ballon d’Or winner in recent times, especially for the first hour. Some excellent interplay in the attacking third could have made the scoreline more convincing.
Asensio: It was difficult for him to get into the game, then he started to show the undisputed talent in his boots. His link up with other attacking players was a delight to watch at times and his touch remains top notch. Almost had a couple of assists to call his own.
Benzema: Another game had passed 90 minutes without the Frenchman scoring, but the whistle hadn’t yet blown and he pounced. That late goal put a deserved distance between the two sides, but he should have made sure of other chances earlier in the game. Still such a valuable threat, but question marks will remain.
Vinicius: Just as it seemed that an early goal could chase away the ghosts - especially as it came on the back of last week’s winner - more ghouls arrived. A couple of very gettable chance should have been put away but he was involved in some impressive build-up play at times. More to come for sure.
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