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PSG vs Real Madrid, Champions League 2015/2016: Match review

Madrid deserved more throughout the first half but ended up sitting back and holding for the draw.

Denis Doyle/Getty Images

It's quite hard to blame Benítez for backing down his team hoping to get a draw once they couldn't score during the first half. Real Madrid were missing 5 starters today -- though Modric entered the game later -- and PSG are a very solid team playing at home. After all, if Madrid manage to beat PSG at the Bernabéu two weeks from now, they will be the heavy favorites to win the Group, and that was the first and main target when the Champions League started.

Either way, Real Madrid played well enough to collect all three points tonight, at least throughout the first half. Kroos completely dominated the game -- what an astonishing performance by the German -- alongside Casemiro and that gave Jesé and Cristiano Ronaldo some good scoring chances. As always, Marcelo's creativity was a key factor for Real's offensive line too. Unluckily enough, Isco and Lucas Vázquez couldn't match the quality of their teammates' performances and that ended up hurting Real Madrid's possibilities as Los Blancos were not dangerous enough through the right flank.

Isco hasn't been himself since Benítez took over and the manager needs to find an answer as soon as possible. James will be back with the squad soon but Isco should still be an important player in Real Madrid's rotation as he definitely has the quality to create several opportunities and almost win a game on his own.

The second half was entirely different. Jesé and Isco got tired, Benítez took them off and replaced them with Cheryshev and Modric. Real ended up sitting back and waiting for some counterattacking chances to appear. PSG never created much danger so it was a comfortable scenario for Los Blancos. Still, they had proven they were good enough to control the game and maybe earn the three points, so it seems reasonable to feel frustrated at the team's attitude during the last 45 minutes of the game.

Madrid will most likely recover Benzema, Bale and James for the return game against PSG, so Benítez has every reason to be satisfied with this draw. Nonetheless, Real Madrid wasted a good opportunity to earn a convincing, statement win at the Parc des Princes. This PSG team could only control the tempo of the game once Madrid sat back and even then they weren't as dangerous as they should've been. Ibrahimovic and Co. will have to play much better if they want to win at the Bernabéu.

Benítez and his men will play away against Celta de Vigo this Saturday and that will also be a good chance for Madrid to prove their worth. With Jesé, Kroos and Marcelo playing the way they did tonight, Real should have enough tools to dismantle Celta.

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