Publish-Casemiro Actual Madrid thrash Celta Vigo, present why they’re LaLiga’s favourites once more
Real Madrid cruised to a comfortable victory over Celta Vigo, 4-1, in LaLiga’s second week of the season and the membership’s first sport since Casemiro departed for Manchester United. Karim Benzema scored first for Madrid and Iago Aspas equalized, however then Madrid turned it on and made it not possible for Celta Vigo to claw their means again in.
Luka Modric, Vinicius Junior and Federico Valverde all scored in what could be an emphatic assertion of intent from Actual Madrid to place the remainder of LaLiga on discover. ESPN’s Alex Kirkland has response from Abanca-Balaídos in Spain.
No Casemiro, no downside
Actual Madrid’s midfield was all the time going to return beneath scrutiny within the first outing of the post-Casemiro period, after the midfielder’s £70 million move to Manchester United was confirmed a day earlier.
Right here at Balaidos it was Aurelien Tchouameni — recruited at even higher expense earlier this summer season — who stepped as much as reassure Madrid followers that there’s life after that legendary midfield trio of Casemiro, Toni Kroos and Luka Modric.
Kroos did not function right here, absent with flu, however Modric — nonetheless in some way getting higher aged 36 — was majestic alongside Tchouameni and Eduardo Camavinga. He put Madrid forward with a trademark curling shot earlier than half-time and later performed a visionary move for Vinicius Junior to make it 3-1 after the break.
There was lots to love about Tchouameni’s efficiency too. The younger France midfielder appeared to develop in confidence and authority because the match went on.
That third aim started with Tchouameni’s block contained in the Actual Madrid penalty space, earlier than Modric and Vinicius did the remainder — and it was his driving midfield run that made Madrid’s fourth aim, completed off by Fede Valverde.
There are higher challenges forward, and like every younger participant, Tchouameni could have good and dangerous days, however this was a really encouraging begin.
Centre-back dilemma for Ancelotti
Carlo Ancelotti has made it clear that final yr’s most well-liked centre-back pair, David Alaba and Eder Militao, begin this season as first selection regardless of the arrival of Antonio Rudiger on a free switch from Chelsea.
Militao made one other high-profile mistake right here although — dealing with the ball for Celta’s first-half penalty equaliser — whereas Rudiger got here off the bench to catch the attention with one other bodily dominant show.
Rudiger’s LaLiga debut at Almeria final weekend was hardly flawless, however you surprise how lengthy Ancelotti can proceed to omit a participant along with his character, expertise and athleticism.
One rampaging run upfield, earlier than exchanging passes with Karim Benzema, led to Madrid being awarded a second penalty of the evening, which was missed by substitute Eden Hazard.
Madrid’s squad this yr is full of expertise, and Rudiger has already proven an surprising versatility, filling in in each full-back positions, however he’ll be eager to play extra earlier than too lengthy, with Militao wanting most certainly to drop out.
Aspas the primary man for Celta as soon as once more
If Madrid are susceptible to an over-reliance on Benzema to attain the objectives they should problem for trophies as soon as once more, Celta’s prospects this season relaxation fully on the shoulders of Iago Aspas.
The 35-year-old native boy and membership legend grabbed 18 league objectives final yr — solely Benzema scored extra — and after summer season departures for attack-minded, inventive forwards like Brais Mendez and Nolito, Aspas could have much more accountability for each offering and ending this time.
New signing Goncalo Paciencia did wonderful right here as a goal man, whereas the on-loan Carles Perez acquired a run out off the bench, however whenever you take a look at the Celta squad it is solely Aspas who appears to be like more likely to get into double figures.
He is nonetheless able to brilliance — one run on the stroke of half-time noticed him skip previous Modric and break forwards earlier than working out of steam — and Celta have proficient gamers elsewhere on the pitch reminiscent of Javi Galan and Fran Beltran, however they’re additionally uneven and worryingly inconsistent.
Success or failure for Celta this yr will come down — because it has for a lot of the final decade — to how far Aspas can take them.
Actual Madrid: Thibaut Courtois, 6. Dani Carvajal, 6. David Alaba, 7. Eder Militao, 5. Ferland Mendy, 6. Aurelien Tchouameni, 8. Eduardo Camavinga, 7. Luka Modric, 8. Fede Valverde, 7. Vinicius Junior, 8. Karim Benzema, 7.
Subs: Antonio Rudiger, 7. Dani Ceballos, 6. Lucas Vazquez, 6. Eden Hazard, 5. Marco Asensio, 6.
Celta Vigo: Agustin Marchesin, 7. Hugo Mallo, 7. Joseph Aidoo, 6. Unai Nunez, 6. Javi Galan, 7. Renato Tapia, 5. Fran Beltran, 7. Oscar Rodriguez, 6. Franco Cervi, 7. Iago Aspas, 7. Goncalo Paciencia, 6.
Subs: Carles Perez, 6. Gabriel Veiga, 6. Luca de la Torre, 6.
Finest and worst performers
BEST: Luka Modric, Actual Madrid.
Excellent. Helped the youthful midfielders alongside him, scored the aim of the sport, and created the essential third for Vinicius which put Madrid out of sight.
WORST: Eder Militao, Actual Madrid.
His performances — and particularly his focus — want to enhance, or Rudiger shall be within the workforce earlier than lengthy.
Highlights and notable moments
Karim Benzema, the most effective participant in LaLiga final season, scored his opening aim of the 2022-23 marketing campaign.
Benzema scores his first LaLiga aim of the season 📈🔥 pic.twitter.com/cxC0XXlfNg
— ESPN FC (@ESPNFC) August 20, 2022
Celta Vigo pulled one again by means of an Iago Aspas penalty, however then Luka Modric acquired in on the motion too.
Modric scored certainly one of his signature objectives from exterior the field, later incomes applause from the Celta Vigo followers when he was subbed off later within the sport.
Whereas Celta Vigo stored the match feeling shut within the first half and the groups went to the break with Madrid solely main 2-1, the second half was a really totally different story.
When Madrid made it 3-1 on a stunning Vinicius Junior end, it was just about over.
After the match: What the managers, gamers stated
Actual Madrid supervisor Carlo Ancelotti: “We’re completely happy. We performed properly. We had good particular person performances from gamers who have not performed so much, they’re new. Tchouameni performed very well, and Camavinga. We confirmed a variety of vitality on the pitch and the efficiency was good, we’re assured sooner or later for certain.”
Ancelotti: “We have now gamers who can play in several positions, it helps the workforce. I feel the squad we now have is a extremely good squad, I’ve no doubts about that.”
Actual Madrid midfielder Aurelien Tchouameni: “In fact we now have to consider a transition… The veterans perceive it very properly, as a result of the kids confirmed final season too that they deserve a spot. So it is essential to handle the dressing room properly, the understanding of the veterans and the endurance of the kids.”
Tchouameni on Modric: “He is immortal. Luka is all the time prepared, he is all the time ready, he all the time performs properly. The aim he scored modified the sport. Till the aim the sport was even, aggressive, Celta pressed us properly, it was arduous for us in possession. Within the second half they dropped their depth, and we performed the ball out properly from the again and our transitions have been spectacular.”
Key stats (offered by ESPN Stats & Info)
Karin Benzema scored his nineteenth penalty aim in LaLiga. Solely six lively gamers have scored extra penalties than the Frenchman in LaLiga: Raúl García, Negredo, Parejo, Iago Aspas, Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo.
For the reason that begin of final season, no workforce has taken extra penalty kicks than Actual Madrid (13, tied with Levante) in LaLiga.
Iago Aspas scored his 136th LaLiga aim, the fourth-most amongst lively gamers. He’s additionally now tied for tenth most penalty kicks all-time in LaLiga with 31. Subsequent on the listing is David Villa with 32.
Luka Modric scored his twelfth profession LaLiga aim from exterior the field. Of Modric’s 23 LaLiga objectives, 12 have been from exterior the field. Since Luka Modric joined Actual Madrid in 2012-13, the one gamers with extra objectives from exterior the field in LaLiga are Lionel Messi (67), Antoine Griezmann (25), Cristiano Ronaldo (24), Dani Parejo (18) and Iago Aspas (16).
Federico Valverde’s scored his first aggressive membership aim since his 98th minute winner in opposition to Barcelona within the SuperCup Semifinals on Jan. 12.
Aurelien Tchouameni had 13 recoveries. Casemiro, who led the workforce LaLiga in recoveries final season with 230, solely had 1 sport with 13+ recoveries with Actual Madrid in LaLiga final season (14 vs Getafe in January 2022).