Real Madrid - Granada: Player Ratings

Denis Doyle

Well, it wasn't pretty on offense for large stretches of time, but the defense played well and the guys up front got what was needed to get the three points. Top of the table!

Diego Lopez: A. Lopez is on a streak of 388 minutes in the league without conceding a goal. He wasn't really called into action (one save and one catch) so he was more of a spectator than anything. At least he got one of the best seats in the house!

Daniel Carvajal: A+. Great runs forward, full of energy, good defending. Pressed Granada hard but still helped on defense. Wonderful all-around game MOTM if you ask me. This kid is going to be something special.

Pepe: A-. Looked a little bit slow and sluggish early but got steadier as the game progressed. Didn't have too much to do so it's hard to judge his performance (though less is more if you're a defender).

Sergio Ramos: A-. Strong defense, good header on the Granada side, but yet another yellow card. The things we've come to expect from Sergio.

Marcelo: A. Great passing and good crosses. Didn't track back consistently but provided good defense when he did as he had the most successful tackles on the team. On a day where the offense was short in creativity, his runs were very beneficial and he provided the assist to the key second goal for Madrid which effectively shut Granada down.

Xabi Alonso: B. Looked invisible for stretches in the first half. The passes seemed simple and the tackles were off, not to mention some poor positioning. Played much better in the second half after Madrid scored and eventually put in a solid defensive shift.

Luka Modric: A. Great passes, juking guys left and right. Worked very hard on defense and was the most creative player in the first half. Very nearly scored in the second half as he found his way into the box on a couple of occasions. Picked up a yellow card but still played very well as he assisted CR in his goal. Second in line for MOTM if you ask me but a couple of players have a strong argument as well.

Angel Di Maria: B-. Up and down day. Probably the poorest player in the first half, along with Xabi, as his crosses were bad and his touch in the box failed him. Second half was much better for Dobby as he was making a number of key passes and very nearly scored a goal of his own. Still, not a very good first half at all and that might be due to the heavy minutes he's gotten lately.

Gareth Bale: B-. Initially, Bale was simply abusing the man assigned to mark him as the defender couldn't keep up, but the Madrid man's passes rarely found their recipient. He took a very hard kick which probably should have gotten the Granada player sent off and Carlo took him off at HT because of it. However, he needs to become more assertive and demand the ball as he's somewhat drifting in and out of the action. Carlo needs to sit down and really figure out what his role on the pitch is going to be.

Cristiano Ronaldo: A.Couple of good plays in the first half but not much involvement. Seemed to be drifting up top into the striker role. Almost scored off an amazing bicycle kick that would've been a contender for next year's Puskas award but got the key goal in the second half, his 32nd in all competitions, and played much better after HT (like the rest of the team). You can only hold the man down for so long before he gets on the scoresheet.

Karim Benzema: B. Ran hard and generally did an okay job pressing the defenders. However, offsides were a problem (too many of them yet again) and his touch failed him a few times. Would've had a goal in the first half but it was called offside. Picked up a yellow in the second half (his first card since 2011) but eventually slotted home a neat goal which effectively put the game out of reach for Granada.

Substitutes

Jese: B+. Not as much impact as in other games but still had a solid day in terms of passing.

Isco: B+. Got a short run of minutes so not much of a chance to make an impact. Could've had a pretty clear shot on goal at one point but he opted to give the fans a show with the Isco Disco. He, Carva and Jese had an outstanding sequence in the Granada box near the end of the match that's just hard to describe with words.

Illarra: B. Came on late so didn't have too much to do other than run around and look like a young Xabi.

Granada

Roberto: A. Give their GK props, that save on CR's bicycle kick will probably be the highlight of his season. He also had a nice save on Luka in the second half but it's a tall task to shut out Real in the Bernabeu.

Your thoughts? What do you agree with, what do you disagree with?

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