Real Madrid fall to second in the La Liga table after drawing 0-0 with Rayo Vallecano at the Santiago Bernabeu.
Despite having a whopping 22 shots on goal, Madrid were unable to find the breakthrough against a resolute Vallecano outfit, with the Federico Valverde and Joselu being among the Los Blancos player who missed good chances during the game.
The 0-0 draw means that Granada are now, rather shockingly, top of the La Liga table after 12 gameweeks; two points clear of Madrid and four clear of Barcelona.
How the game unfolded
Real Madrid were so nearly 1-0 up inside the opening five minutes of the game. After pouncing on a rather lax bit of play from Unai Lopez, Federico Valverde latched onto a loose ball and race into the penalty area. With just the goalkeeper to beat however, Valverde was unable to direct the ball past Stole Dimitrievski, who palmed the subsequent effort on goal around the post.
Joselu was next to come close to scoring, rising highest in the heart of the box to get his head on a fantastic set piece delivery from Luka Modric. The forward’s header, unfortunately for the home fans, flew wide.
Perhaps the talking point of the game then occurred when Jude Bellingham fell awkwardly on his shoulder trying to control the ball with his chest. The England star received extensive treatment on the pitch and was able to continue. It remains to be seen how much damage to his shoulder he suffered though.
Madrid dominated the remainder of the first half thereafter, with Fran Garcia seeing a strike from the left of the penalty are go just over the crossbar, and Joselu forcing Dimitrievski into another fantastic save after being found by a clever cut-back cross from Vinicius Junior.
After huffing and puffing in search of a goal at the start of the second half, Madrid did finally find the back of the net in the 66th minute.
Vinicius Junior latched onto a Joselu header to the back post and slipped the ball under the goalkeeper and into the back of the net. However, after a quick VAR check, Joselu was judged to have been offside in the lead up to the goal and it was rightfully ruled out.
Substitute Rodrygo Goes was the next Madrid player to almost open the scoring, drilling just wide after being found by Dani Carvajal at the right side of the box.
Rayo held firm after that scare 20 minutes from time, with Los Blancos being largely unable to find a way through a stout away defence in the final minutes of the game – something they’ve so often done so far this season.
GK: Kepa Arrizabalaga – 5/10 – Did he touch the ball? We’re not sure he did.
RB: Dani Carvajal – 7/10 – Probably his best performance of the season so far. The Madrid captain made a number of telling contributions in the final third.
CB: Antonio Rudiger – 6/10 – A threat from set pieces during the game.
CB: David Alaba – 5/10 – He didn’t have a whole lot, if anything to do defensively.
LB: Fran Garcia – 6/10 – Came within a whisker of bagging his first goal as a Madrid player. A decent outing for the young full-back.
CM: Federico Valverde – 7/10 – Really, really should have scored in the opening five minutes. His general play was very good thereafter.
CM: Eduardo Camavinga – 6/10 – Worked hard in the middle of the park.
CM: Luka Modric – 7/10 – A typical Luka Modric performance. Used the ball well every time he had it at his feet.
AM: Jude Bellingham – 6/10 – His injury scare will be one of the taking points of the game. Produced a few bits of magic after returning to the pitch following some treatment, but couldn’t find another winner for his team.
ST: Joselu – 5/10 – Missed a few good chances during the game. A good option but shouldn’t really be the club’s only natural number nine.
ST: Vinicius Junior – 7/10 – Scored an offside goal and generally looked the most likely to give Madrid the lead in the game.
SUB: Rodrygo Goes (’70 for Modric) – 5/10 – Came on and immediately missed a great chance. The story of his season so far really.
SUB: Toni Kroos (’72 for Garcia) – 5/10.
SUB: Nacho Fernandez (’86 for Camavinga) – N/A.
Manager – Carlo Ancelotti – 5/10 – Having not found a way to win the game, Ancelotti’s decision to not bring on either Arda Guler or Brahim Diaz will undoubtedly be questioned all week by the Madrid press.
Man of the match: Stole Dimitrievski (Rayo Vallecano)