HomeWorld NewsReal Madrid 2-1 Real Sociedad: Player ratings as Madrid maintain 100% record in La Liga
Real Madrid 2-1 Real Sociedad: Player ratings as Madrid maintain 100% record in La Liga
September 18, 2023
Real Madrid maintained their 100% record in La Liga thanks to a come-from-behind win over a spirited Real Sociedad side.
Sociedad took a shock early lead through Ander Barrenetxea, but ultimately succumbed to second half goals from Federico Valverde and Joselu and the newly-refurbished Santiago Bernabeu.
The win means that Madrid go back to the top of the La Liga table having won their first five games of the season.
How the game unfolded
Real Madrid started the game extremely brightly, and almost took the lead in the third minute through David Alaba. The centre-back bombed forward in open play linking up with Toni Kroos and then Jude Bellingham – who squared the ball perfectly into his path – before forcing Alex Remiro into a smart save.
A few minutes later, however, Madrid were made to rue that missed chance by Ander Barrenetxea. The young wide player stole march on Dani Carvajal inside the box to volley a clever Takefusa Kubo cross goalward. Barrenetxea would see that initial strike saved brilliantly by Kepa Arrizabalaga and a follow up saved as well, but the 21-year-old was able to follow up to prod home while the Madrid goalkeeper was rooted to the floor.
Carvajal almost made amends for his defensive lapse in the lead up to Sociedad’s goal by almost assist an equaliser in the 15th minute.
The right-back latched onto a loose pass out of the box by Remiro, before bursting down the right. Carvajal was able to drag the ball back into the path of the unmarked Joselu in the middle of the penalty area, however the striker was only able to hit the crossbar with his first-time effort when the goal was gaping.
That chance started a Madrid blitzkrieg of the Sociedad goal, with Rodrygo, Joselu and Bellingham all forcing Remiro into smart saves in quick succession.
Madrid were almost made to pay for those missed chances again on the half hour mark when Kubo cross caught the Los Blancos defence napping, allowing Mikel Merino to steal in and force Kepa into a stunning save with a powerful low header.
Within a minute of the start of the second half, the home side got their equaliser. Surprisingly that equaliser wouldn’t come courtesy of Bellingham, but rather Federico Valverde.
In typical Valverde fashion, the goal was a stunning one. The Uruguayan was found cleverly with a pull back cross to the edge of the box by Fran Garcia, and he made no mistake with his first time side-footed effort on goal – firing the ball in off the left post with aplomb.
The home side took control of proceedings thereafter, and on the hour mark they took a deserved lead. The goal would, once again, come courtesy of a great cross from Garcia on the left flank. The left-back floated a sumptuous cross to the back post where Joselu was on hand to head home.
It was so nearly 3-1 in the 84th minute when an onrushing Valverde latched onto another pass to the edge of the box. This time however, a Sociedad defender was on hand to deflect the first-time effort just wide of the foot of the post.
Bellingham came within a whisker of getting his sixth La Liga goal of the season late on, but saw a diving header well saved by Remiro in added time.
Goalscorer / Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno/GettyImages
GK: Kepa Arrizabalaga – 7/10 – Made a number of stunning saves, including in the lead up to conceding the opening goal.
RB: Dani Carvajal – 6/10 – Fell asleep in the lead up to Sociedad’s opening goal. The veteran was good going forward however.
CB: Antonio Rudiger – 6/10 – Used the ball well when in possession.
CB: David Alaba – 6/10 – Almost scored inside the opening three minutes following a storming run forward.
LB: Fran Garcia – 8/10 – Bagged twos assist with two fantastic crosses from the left flank. He looks set to become a key player for Ancelotti.
CM: Federico Valverde – 8/10 – Scored a stunning goal to get Madrid back into the game. That’s what he’s capable of.
CM: Aurelien Tchouameni – 6/10 – A quiet outing for the France international.
CM: Toni Kroos – 7/10 – Pinged the ball around the park in the way he only can.
AM: Jude Bellingham – 7/10 – He didn’t get his goal, but it was yet another impressive performance from the England international.
ST: Rodrygo – 7/10 – Linked up very well with Garcia down the left flank, and cause Sociedad with his movement.
ST: Joselu – 7/10 – Missed a very good chance early on but made amends by giving Madrid the lead in the second half with a thumping header.
SUB: Luka Modric (62′ for Joselu) – Barely put a foot wrong when introduced.
SUB: Eduardo Camavinga (62′ for Tchouameni) – Provided the Madrid midfield with some energy in the second half.
SUB: Nacho Fernandez (74′ for Garcia) – N/A.
Manager – Carlo Ancelotti – 6/10 – Despite going behind in the game, Ancelotti’s side were never bad at any point. They ultimately deserved their win, and their goals early in the second half were perhaps an indicaton of a job well done in the dressing at half time by Ancelotti.
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