Real Madrid taught Sevilla a footballing lesson by thrashing them 5-0 at the Santiago Bernabeu stadium in Saturday’s Laliga afternoon fixture.
The game started in celebratory mood, as Cristiano Ronaldo presented his fifth Ballon d’Or award to the excited and cheerful Bernabeu fans.
Sevilla had started the afternoon on the same number of points as Madrid in joint fourth, and with the hope they’d take advantage of Madrid’s problems at the back. But the sides looked worlds apart as Real scored all five goals before forty-two minutes to close to within five points of Barça at the top of the table.
Nacho got Los Blancos off to a perfect start before Ronaldo doubled the lead thanks to a brilliant assist from Marco Asensio.
The five times Balon d’Or winner, scored his fourth league goal of the season when he converted a penalty to give Zidane’s side an unassailable 3-0 lead.
Toni Kroos and Achraf Hakimi rounded off the rout before the half time whistle, as Real leapfrogged cross city rivals Atletico Madrid into third position.
— Real Madrid C.F.🇬🇧 (@realmadriden) December 9, 2017
Problems at the back for Madrid? The reverse was the case;
There had been concerns in Madrid ranks all week at the European champions’ lack of defensive options with Sergio Ramos, Dani Carvajal and Casemiro all suspended and Raphael Varane injured.
Previous fixtures involving Sevilla and Real Madrid showed there are usually lots of goals involved. As such, a whole lot of fans were worried about the game, trying to thinker up what alternative Zidane could bring up to tame Sevilla.
However, it was Sevilla who looked like the side without a defence as they gifted the hosts the opener after just three minutes.
A harmless corner to the back post saw Sevilla duo Simon Kjaer and Luis Muriel get in each other’s way and present Nacho with a gift to fire home from point-blank range.
Ronaldo struck twice, and
Only a fine reaction save from Rico prevented Ronaldo completing a first-half hat-trick moments later.
However, the Madrid goals kept coming before half-time as a lovely one-two on the counter-attack between Kroos and Lucas Vazquez left the German midfielder with a simple finish.
Hakimi then made it five with his first Madrid goal from a narrow angle after being played in by Benzema’s inch-perfect pass.
With Madrid facing a busy fortnight as they jet off to Abu Dhabi to defend the Club World Cup this week before hosting Barça, Zinedine Zidane’s men understandably took their foot off the gas after the break.
Ronaldo, Luka Modric and Kroos were all withdrawn, but Real could easily have added to their tally as Benzema’s diving header came back off the post.
Yet, a first half five-goal haul, undoubtedly Madrid’s best performance since they swept aside Barça in the Spanish Super Cup in August was more than enough to set up the Catalans’ return visit on December 23 nicely.