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Real Madrid At Atlético de Madrid, La Liga 2012 Match Recap: Cristiano Scores Three (Again), Real Beats Atleti (Again)

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Real Madrid beat their local foes with a 1-4 win at the Vicente Calderón. Cristiano Ronaldo scored Real's first three goals and assisted Callejón in the closer. The team had to sweat out the win though, as central striker Radamel Falcao tied the game with a trademark header in the 55th minute.

Marcelo was finally out of the list because of a back injury, so Mourinho decided to start Portuguese left back Fábio Coentrao instead. The former Benfica player completed his best game in a Real Madrid jersey by defending with intensity and going to the attack just when needed. Real Madrid's coach also started Ramos instead of Albiol and Kaká for Özil, who joined the game after halftime.

The game wasn't as easy as the scoreboard suggests. Real Madrid didn't create as many scoring chances as in the game against Valencia, but they finished the match scoreless against Emery's team and today they scored four goals. That's the way this sport works.

The match started at a slow pace. Khedira, Pepe and Ramos were given too much responsibility for Real Madrid's game and Atlético seemed comfortable waiting. Kaká and Benzema were invisible and Di María played atrociously. Luckily enough for Real Madrid, Cristiano Ronaldo scored off a long free-kick. It looked as if Courtois could've done more to stop the shot, but the curve ball was pretty much unpredictable.

After Real Madrid's goal, Kaka' started to receive more balls and even began to create a couple of good plays. But this was still not enough, and he knows it. It's impossible to blame him without naming Xabi Alonso, too. Alonso was Real Madrid's worst player today. Benzema was terrible, and Arbeloa didn't play well, but Alonso's match was beyond that. He really needs to step his game now, because it doesn't look like Sahin is ready to start in important games for the team, and Granero certainly isn't either.

The first half concluded with the 0-1 result in the scoreboard and the uncertainty of such a narrow margin. Mourinho decided to play Özil for Kaká and the German player was probably just as bad. Radamel Falcao benefited from a mistake by Sergio Ramos and Coentrao in clearing the danger off a cross. The Colombian is an aerial threat and he scored in the first clear header he had. Coentrao probably thought Ramos was going to touch the ball, but the Spanish center back missed and Falcao was smart enough to go after the cross and beat Casillas.

Real Madrid needed to score and close the game once again as there were only 35 minutes to go and Real Madrid could smell Barcelona coming from behind. However, this team has a legendary player in Cristiano Ronaldo. The Portuguese player stepped up to the challenge and scored one of his trademark folha-seca goals in the 68th minute to put his team ahead once again. Mourinho then changed Higuaín for Benzema.

The team started to move the ball patiently and got rid of their anxiety. Özil operated at a steady enough pace to allow Madrid to rest a bit.Then Godín fouled Higuaín inside the box and the referee called the penalty. It didn't look so clear before the replay was showed, but Godin's foolish play allowed Cristiano Ronaldo to complete his hat-trick and put his team ahead with a two-goal margin.

The Portuguese player had a good chance to score his fourth goal after a great pass from Higuaín, but Courtois stopped the goal with his chest. Real Madrid still wanted to increase the lead and Cristiano assisted José Callejón (who had entered the game for Di María after the penalty-kick). The Spanish winger pointed to his badge while celebrating the goal.

The team is still four points ahead of FC Barcelona before Guardiola's team visits Levante's stadium this next weekend. Mourinho's team will have to deal with Sporting Gijón at the Santiago Bernabéu prior to their travel to Munich and the Camp Nou. The match against Gijón will probably be the easiest in three weeks, but Mourinho will probably not make any major rotation.

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