Real Madrid scraped past Granada on Saturday afternoon, needing a second half goal from Karim Benzema to capture all three points. Once again, however, dubious refereeing decisions decided the match, with Granada unjustly having a goal scratched off due to an offside call. Los Blancos, on the other hand, appeared to have benefited from an officiating mistake, with Isco seemingly offside in the build-up to Madrid’s lone goal.
Keylor Navas continues to impress after another clean sheet and some fine saves. Varane showed off his pace and will subsequently continue to give Rafa Benítez a centre-back selection headache. Jesé meanwhile, seems to be given no chance to demonstrate his skill and potential to the team.
- Keylor Navas.
The Costa Rican continues to demonstrate to the Madrid faithful that he is more than capable of acting as Madrid’s stonewall in the net. Time and time again, the 28-year-old has saved Madrid from going down with some remarkable saves. Navas’ speed and agility when coming off the line has been quite inspiring and if he continues to play in such a manner, the Bernabéu hierarchy may finally realize that the goalkeeper search should be put to an end.
- Raphaël Varane.
The 22-year-old’s pace and composure helped ensure that Granada did not walk away with one or two goals past Navas and co, as Varane was quick to stop several counterattacks from the Granada frontline. Pepe, in contrast, seemed to be more tested with El-Arabi, with several misplaced passes in dangerous positions due to pressure. It is becoming increasingly clear that Madrid coach Rafa Benítez should primarily opt for the Frenchman as Sergio Ramos’ defensive partner.
- Jesé’s absence.
The young Canarian forward will feel overlooked as Benítez started Lucas Vázquez on the wing in a match where the 22-year-old could have played a decisive role. Additionally, Benítez favoured Cheryshev as an impact sub, even though Madrid were pushing for a goal to finish off the match. Rafa Benítez must be careful, as he is risking losing Jesé to another team come next summer’s transfer window. Clearly a player filled with potential, Jesé must make good use of his minimal chances, whenever they should come. Considering the average performances of both Vázquez and Cheryshev, it seems as if the Canarian-native will have his time to shine soon enough.