Player Ratings: Athletic Bilbao 1 – 2 Real Madrid; 2021 La Liga

COVID affected the players – who saw Alaba and Isco on the list this week – suspensions (Casemiro), injuries (Carvajal) leaving Carlo Ancelotti with only three first-team players on the bench. The first team has chosen itself with Camavinga joining Casemiro and the only question is whether Hazard will be fit enough for another start or whether Jovic will share Benzema’s lead in a regime change. It will be two important goals from Pichichi that would lead Madrid to victory. The second half saw Real Madrid suffer, but they managed to escape from San Mamés with a victory. Full match player ratings below:

Thibaut Courtois – 7: He made two big saves, one of which stopped the ball by holding Nico William’s shot between his legs.

Lucas Vazquez 6: Aside from a very poor pass towards Courtois that was blocked by Inaki Williams, the right-back has improved. Lucas’ form always seems to improve with continuity.

Eder Militao – 8: Another very good match from Eder Militao, the Brazilian won all his aerial matches and kept the duo of Inaki Williams and Ohan Sunset calm.

Nacho – 7: He defended really well 1 v 1 against the Williams brothers, including a clever play covering Nico Williams and denying him a cross despite the deadly pace of the young Bilbao player. One mark in his book could be on Sunset’s goal, and arguably he could have come close to shooting the ball.

Ferland Mindy – 6: He made very little progress going forward, but fought more than one duel against each Williams brother where he showed off his impressive physical strength.

Eduardo Camavinga – 4: Shaky game everywhere. It had a few good grinds, but for the most part wasn’t comfortable in the single axle position. He hit the ball when he wasn’t around, had some powerful touches that almost led to counter-attacks, and already earned his fifth yellow title of the season which means he misses the next match against Getafe.

Toni Kroos – 7: He won all his matches on the ground, a high team of 114 touches, and a decisive pass against Benzema. The German was once again the accelerator in Real Madrid’s midfield.

Faith Valverde – 5: When Real Madrid had possession of the ball, Valverde would start at right-back and then use his speed and agility to blast the field with the ball or sweep through a one-to-two exchange. The only complaint is that those rushes and junctions weren’t frequent enough.

Eden Hazard – 4: I played as a right winger and slowed the game down a lot. He never faced his man and struggled to keep up with important counter-attacks towards the end of the second half.

Vinicius Jr-5: A lot of tricks and a lot of confrontations with Athletic Bilbao players instead of focusing on his game and his product in the last third. You will get some much-needed rest during your holiday vacation.

Karim Benzema—8.5: He scored a creative goal from the first time which turned perfectly into the bottom corner of the net. Just a few minutes later, he managed to grab the second after taking advantage of a swerve in front of Unai Nunez.

Alternatives:

Peter Federico – 6: He played on the left wing instead of his favorite right wing in the last five minutes of the match. She appeared in the role of the left rear wing more than the role of the wing. He played through Eduardo Camavinga on the counter-attack and had a 1 v 1 with Atheltic goalkeeper Agirrezabala, hitting the first time a direct shot at the goalkeeper. After just a minute or so, he found some space on the wing and cut the ball for Luka Jovic who should have done a lot better.

Mariano-2: A very poor veil in the last five minutes. Gharib played as a right winger and lost the ball twice which led to dangerous counterattack opportunities for Athletic and then hit a long ball for Peter on Madrid’s dangerous response.

Luka Jovic – 2: Came in the 89th minute in favor of Karim Benzema. He had an amazing opportunity to score after Peter put him in the opponent’s goal, but he fired a weak left-footed ball into Aguirizapala.

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