Real Madrid vs Almeria – La Liga – Match Report

Posted on by Sreya

Real Madrid defeated Almeria, in a forgettable night at Santiago Bernabeu, although the 3-0 scoreline might indicate otherwise. The win ensured the Los Blancos stayed within touching distance from league leaders Barcelona, but Madrid faithful will hope their club start churning out better performances, as a difficult La Liga fixture schedule awaits the UEFA Champions League holders.

Ancelotti decided to rest some of his first-team regulars as Jese and Fabio Coentrao started. Arbeloa, as expected, came in for the suspended Daniel Carvajal. Asier Illaramendi was given another opportunity to showcase his mettle in Modric’s absence.

While Real Madrid set up in a 4-3-3, Almeria started in their preferred 4-2-3-1 formation. The visitors started with a spring in their step, obviously buoyed by their recent good form. But Real Madrid were uncharacteristically sloppy and insipid in their play. Although Almeria hardly threatened in the first half, Carlo Ancelotti’s side looked lacking for creativity. The scorers were not disturbed until James Rodriguez scored a stunner late into the first half. The Colombian scored one of the best goals of the season with a long-distance shot. The often criticized summer signing of the La Liga giants put in another brilliant shift from the midfield last night with his excellent passing and tremendous workrate.

Almeria conceded an own goal, mere minutes into the second half, off centre back Mauro do Santos. The goal proved to be the death knell for the visitors as it allowed Real Madrid to have a complete grasp on the match, in spite of not playing at the level desired from a top team. Alvaro Arbeloa added some gloss on the scoreline with a good finish off Javier Hernandez’s assist, to cap off a brilliant performance at right back.

Isco replaced Rodriguez at the hour mark and Nacho was substituted late into the match, which meant Martin Odegaard had to remain content with another stint on the bench.

Almeria did not register a single shot on target over the span of ninety minutes. But Ronaldo’s lack of goals and Illaramendi’s sub-par performance should worry Carlo Ancelotti ahead of the business end of the season. Real Madrid travel to Sevilla next and they will be facing Juventus as well in the UEFA Champions League semi-finals in near future. Ancelotti will be hoping Benzema and Gareth Bale return to match fitness soon, or else the busy fixture period could turn troublesome for the Galacticos.

Real Madrid sit on 82 points after 34 matches, two points adrift of Barcelona while Almeria stay put at 17th with 31 points.

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