Real Madrid spent a week in purgatory after their embarrassing defeat against Atlético de Madrid last Saturday and went back to the Bernabéu in order to make up for their mistakes. Deportivo de la Coruña were, probably, one the most suitable rivals for a team that desperately needed a victory to come to terms with the fans and, although their performance was not brilliant, the 2-0 victory should serve our players to calm down and face next Wednesday's game against Schalke 04 in a better mood.
Real Madrid: Casillas; Arbeloa, Varane, Nacho, Marcelo; Kroos, Illarramendi (Lucas Silva), Isco (Carvajal); Bale, Ronaldo, Benzema (Jesé).
Deportivo de la Coruña: Fabricio; Laure, Manuel Pablo, Lopo, Luisinho; Bergantiños, Borges (Domínguez); Cuenca, Pérez (Medunjanin), Cavaleiro, Oriol Riera (Hélder Costa).
The first half
Clearly influenced by the noise around them in the last week, Los Blancos started off with a very long possession, trying to set the tempo of the game and avoid complications. It seemed quite clear that their main objective was to avoid all risks as they were confident on their offensive power to end up winning the game. However, their plan was soon proved insufficient, as Deportivo were able to create a couple of good chances to score that the former culé Isaac Cuenca ended up missing.
The fans were whistling and most Real Madrid players seemed quite nervous, but Isco Alarcón and, above him, Gareth Bale stood up and regained the control of the game. The Welshman appeared in very deep positions to take the ball and break Deportivo's lines with his speed. Our rivals were not able to match Real Madrid's superiority in the midfield and Real Madrid approached their goal, but none of the members of the BBC trio were able to finalize their chances, that ended up resulting in two shots to the post and another one that Fabricio deflected to corner kick.
Real Madrid controlled the game and finally managed to open the tin in the 22nd minute. A good combination by Benzema and Bale ended with a cross that Ronaldo missed just on top of the goal-line. Arbeloa was able to throw the ball back when it was about to go away through the baseline and Isco received it at the top of the box. After a good dribble, he managed to shoot to the far post and get Real Madrid's first goal in the evening.
Despite having the advantage, Los Blancos did not manage to keep the game under control, and Deportivo were able to attack more freely than they should have. However, they were not able to cause any serious danger before the break, and their offensive display led Real Madrid counterattack a couple of times, but the second goal did not arrive.
The second half
After the break, Real Madrid's midfielders stepped up a little and were able to finally dictate the tempo they wanted for the game, although this did not serve them to create any good chance to score. Barely nothing happened in the first twenty minutes of the second half, until Marcelo was unleashed and his combinations with Isco and Benzema broke Deportivo's defence once again.
Deportivo tried to press a little more heavily from the 65th minute, and this was their downfall. In the first chance Real Madrid had to counterattack, Ronaldo found Benzema inside the box, and the Frenchman gently scored with a lob over Fabricio. Both teams knew the game was over and, although there were mistakes in both sides of the field that could have resulted on a goal for either side, the scoreboard never changed.
Although Real Madrid's performance was a bit poor, getting the three points was an absolute obligation and they did it. From now on, this team will need to improve in order to be able to keep the advantage in La Liga and fight for the Champions League.