Real Madrid were handed a shock 0-2 defeat by Real Sociedad at home in matchweek 18 of the 2018-19 La Liga on Sunday.
Real Madrid’s difficult start to the New Year continued as they were beaten 0-2 by Real Sociedad at the Santiago Bernabeu this past weekend.
Coming into the game on the back of a 2-2 draw against Villarreal, Santiago Solari’s men had their task cut out, but fell behind just three minutes in as Willian Jose bundled home a penalty, after Casemiro had brought down Mikel Merino inside the box. Karim Benzema had a glorious opportunity to level things up soon after, but the Frenchman fired his effort wide.
Post the half-time break, Real Madrid had a few chances, but were denied by Geronimo Rulli in the Sociedad goal, while they were unlucky to see a clear penalty not given. And things got even worse for the home team when Lucas Vazquez was sent off for a second yellow card on the hour mark.
With less than ten minutes left, substitute Ruben Pardo headed home a second for La Real to kill the game and hand the Merengues a shock defeat at home. The result left Real Madrid in the fifth position in the La Liga table, ten points off of leaders and arch-rivals Barcelona.
— Real Madrid C.F. 🇬🇧🇺🇸 (@realmadriden) January 6, 2019
And here’s how the Madrid stars fared on what was another disappointing outing in the new calendar year;
Thibaut Courtois: 7/10
The Belgian could do little about both of Sociedad’s goals. Went the wrong way for Willian Jose’s penalty and was left exposed by a shoddy defence leading upto Pardo’s header. Made a couple of stellar stops to deny Adnan Januzaj and David Zurutuza in between, to save Real Madrid from further humiliation.
Dani Carvajal: 5/10
Usually one of Real Madrid’s key outlets going forward, the Spanish right-back was nowhere near his usual level. Lacked any energy or purpose going forward on the evening, while he wasn’t always the most reliable in defence either.
Raphael Varane: 5/10
Part of a defence that looked alarmingly vulnerable, especially in the final half hour of the match. Did force a save from Rulli at the other end, but the World Cup winner was nowhere near convincing at the back against the visitors.
Sergio Ramos: 5.5/10
The captain was Real Madrid’s most alert defender on the evening, which isn’t saying much really. Made a few crucial interventions in the first-half and came close to scoring an equalizer as well. But disintegrated with the rest of the team in the final phases of the game.
The Brazilian has been in terrible form of late, but had received the manager’s backing heading into Sunday’s game. However, he failed miserably to repay Solari’s faith in him. Was given the beating all game long by Adnan Januzaj and looked at sea throughout. Whistled off the field when he was substituted late on. About time Sergio Reguilon got a regular run in the side.
Luka Modric: 5/10
The Ballon d’Or winner drew a comfortable save from Rulli from an effort from distance halfway through the first period, but apart from that, made very little contributions as Madrid chased the game. Kept the ball moving, but his passing lacked the incision that Los Blancos so craved on the evening. Booked in the second period for showing dissent.
A minute and a half into the game, the Brazilian midfield enforcer conceded a silly penalty courtesy of a clumsy challenge on Merino. Things did not improve much for Casemiro from thereon as he endured a forgettable evening. Based on that performance, it is unlikely that he will be starting once Marcos Llorente is back to full fitness.
Toni Kroos: 5/10
The German international did not do much wrong on the night, but hardly did anything of note either when Madrid needed him to step up. Shifted into the holding midfield role after Casemiro’s substitution, he struggled to keep the Sociedad midfield runners quiet.
Lucas Vazquez: 3/10
Having already been booked for a silly challenge in the first period, the Spanish international committed another totally avoidable foul at the hour mark to receive his marching orders, letting his team down in a big way. Made little impact during his time on the field, missing a great chance after being sent through by Vinicius.
Karim Benzema: 6/10
The Frenchman spurned a great opportunity soon after Sociedad’s opener, firing wide from just eight yards out. Worked hard off the ball though and regained possession a number of times from the opposition while he linked up well with Vinicius at times, but had little joy in front of goal.
Vinicius Junior: 8/10
The only positive on the evening for Real Madrid. Making his first La Liga start, the Brazilian prodigy looked to make things happen each time he was on the ball, driving at the Sociedad defence at pace. Created a few chances for his teammates and was denied by Rulli a couple of times. Unlucky not to have won a penalty with the score at 1-0. An encouraging display from the teenager.
Replaced Casemiro before the hour mark, the Spaniard played in a couple of delectable through balls for Vinicius soon after coming on. But was guilty of losing possession on a number of occasions as the game progressed.
Sergio Reguilon: N/A
Came on for Marcelo with a little over ten minutes left on the clock. Not enough time to make any impact.
Dani Ceballos: N/A
Thrown on in place for Kroos for the final ten minutes.