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Real Madrid Vs Rayo Vallecano, Liga BBVA 2013-2014: Bale, Cristiano Help Real Cruise (5-0)

After a quiet and somewhat uncomfortable first half, Real Madrid were able to increase the 1-0 lead thanks to a brace by Gareth Bale, an assist by Cristiano Ronaldo to Carvajal and a beautiful goal by Álvaro Morata.

Denis Doyle

Ancelotti did not make many changes after Real's worrying performances against Barcelona and Sevilla. Modric was finally out of the list with a fever, so Illarramendi made the starting lineup. Fàbio Coentrao also gave Marcelo some rest before the crucial European match against Borussia Dortmund (Wednesday, 20:45 CET).

The first half was really sloppy. An invisible and erratic Karim Benzema missed a clear chance on the 2nd minute and that was Real's only scoring opportunity until Cristiano Ronaldo's goal on the 15th. The crowd didn't like the performance and started booing the team often. Diego López, Bale, Benzema and Coentrao were the main targets of those whistles, but Carlo Ancelotti had some for himself when his name was announced by the speaker.

The second half was much better. Carvajal confirmed that lead. He is clearly trying his best but his defensive performances against Barcelona and Sevilla were not enough for an elite right back. His goal was good though, he finished with his left foot off a good touch by Cristiano Ronaldo.

Isco joined the game on the 62nd minute and couldn't do much. He did have some key passes which couldn't be capitalized, but some fans might start thinking about Isco's role in this team. Furthermore, it was Asier Illarramendi the one who left the game, even though Xabi Alonso is clearly tiring and Borussia Dortmund will visit the Bernabéu in just three days. Alonso played the whole match in what was another inexplicable decision by the Italian coach.

Shortly after, Bale scored Real's third goal off a brilliant assist by Di María. The Argentinian player has proved himself as an essential player for Ancelotti's three-man midfield. Bale then showed how fast and powerful he is with the ball on his feet. He drove the counterattack without any help and finished clinically. Two goals and one assist to add to his already decent -if not better- numbers.

Casemiro replaced Di María and Morata entered the game for Benzema shortly after. Morata was sporting a new crew cut look that shows he's ready to battle. And while some of his first touches were not accurate, he finished Real's 5-0 win with a brilliant, stunning goal. He added after the game that he was "happy about scoring, even more so after missing some chances in previous games".

It was a cold-blooded win that doesn't heal Real's wounds, especially after Barcelona and Atlético de Madrid took care of business in difficult venues like Cornellá-El Prat and San Mamés. But a good win against Dortmund could very well take care of this melancholy.

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