Player Ratings: Real Madrid 3-1 Athletic Bilbao
A rocket from Toni Kroos just before half-time and two second-half goals from Karim Benzema sees Real Madrid win for the third consecutive time in LaLiga this season moving level on points with leaders Real Sociedad and Atletico Madrid.
The game got off to a flyer with Toni Kroos getting fouled twice by Raul Garcia which subsequently ended in the former Atletico man getting sent off. The German world cup winner then opened the scoring for Real Madrid just before half-time with a trademark shot from outside the box.
Athletic Bilbao managed to pull one back through Ander Capa early on in the second-half. It was Benzema who restored Real Madrid’s lead scoring his fifth and sixth goals of the season to secure all three points for Los Blancos. These are our player ratings:
Thibaut Courtois: 9/10
Produced a string of incredible saves. The biggest moment of the game was when he pulled off a wonder save in the final five minutes to deny Bilbao from scoring in a one-on-one situation. Real Madrid have the Belgian to thank for the three points.
Dani Carvajal: 8/10
Followed up his excellent performance on the weekend with another good performance tonight. Produced a wonderful cross to assist Benzema for the go ahead goal.
Raphael Varane: 7/10
Coped well with the speed of Bilbao’s Inaki Williams. Had a fairly comfortable game with not much being asked of him.
Sergio Ramos: 7/10
Often caught out of position at the back. Was caught in two minds as to whether he should go for the ball or hold his ground, with that hesitance proving costly and Bilbao took full advantage.
Ferland Mendy: 7/10
Didn’t have much to do in defence and took that as an opportunity to attack. Didn’t create any opportunities and was caught offside in what was a promising counterattack.
Toni Kroos: 9/10
Fouled twice in quick succession resulting in Raul Garcia being sent off after just 15 minutes. Opened the scoring with a brilliant strike from outside the box. MOTM.
Fede Valverde: 6/10
First start after his injury, Valverde was tasked with covering for the suspended Casemiro. The Uruguayan was able to play a more advanced role due to Bilbao being a man down. Important minutes to shake off the cobwebs after a long time out through injury.
Luka Modric: 8/10
Put in another great shift in midfield. Didn’t have much license to roam with Casemiro’s absence but managed to assist Benzema for Real Madrid’s third.
Lucas Vazquez: 6/10
Very quite game from Lucas. The Spaniard put in a few decent crosses but didn’t have much of an impact. Was eventually replaced by Rodrygo.
Karim Benzema: 9/10
Brilliant performance by Benzema from start to finish. A constant thorn for Bilbao whether inside the box or in deeper positions. The Frenchman has been in fantastic form since returning from injury.
Vinicius Jr: 7/10
Very involved throughout. Missed a couple of good opportunities before assisting Kroos for the opener. Scored in the second-half before his goal was ruled out for a marginal offside. Was replaced by Asensio.
Asensio: 6/10 – Replaced Vinicius on the hour mark with Real Madrid in search of a goal. Came close on a couple of occasions.
Isco: 6/10 – Came on around the hour mark and looked eager to score. Looked decent since coming on.
Rodrygo: 6/10 – Came on and added energy to the attack. Created a great chance for Isco.