Real Madrid earned a hard-fought 0-2 win against Espanyol, but it wasn't easy. Casemiro got injured early in the game and Toni Kroos had to come on and play deep. Madrid controlled the game ever since the German started to distribute the ball and ended up getting the three points through goals by James and Benzema.
- Real don't need to shine to collect wins. The last two games played by Zidane's men have been far from brilliant. Los Blancos still need to improve as weaker teams like Sporting Portugal or Espanyol shouldn't have as many scoring chances, but in the meantime Madrid are collecting wins, and that's huge.
- Karim Benzema is back. The French attacker was rusty against Sporting but he cracked the starting lineup once again and proved Zidane right. He scored Real's second goal and completed a very solid performance upfront.
- Asensio must improve. The young Spanish playmaker had a chance to start replacing Cristiano Ronaldo and his effort and work-rate just weren't there. While he is still young and has plenty of room for improvement, Asensio must make the best of the chances he's given if he wants to be a relevant player. His performance yesterday wasn't good enough.