Real Madrid returned from the international break with the first of their many big tests before the end of the year — a match against high-flying Real Sociedad. An early Ramos mistake meant Madrid were forced to be aggressive and attack from the outset. Their quality eventually overtook the boys from San Sebastián with Benzema, Hazard, Modric, and Valverde all playing at a high level. Ultimately the team would overcome the early deficit and see out a 3-1 victory. Full match ratings below:
Thibaut Courtois—7: Made two point blank saves - one against Willian Jose and another late on against Isak. Little he could do in the goal conceded after Ramos passed the ball directly into Willian Jose’s path.
Dani Carvajal—6: What a fun battle; Carvajal vs Oyarzabal. They each had moments where one got the better of the other. Dani recognition of when to press and his work ethic were to be admired.
Raphael Varane—7: Was brilliant in possesion, oftentimes providing the perfect outlet for Carvajal when he ran into trouble. Produced a team high 6 clearances defensively and kept Sociedad relatively quiet.
Sergio Ramos—5: The mistake in the 2nd minute which granted La Real an easy goal is what mars his performance. Otherwise, he was solid — he did well to close down angles and step out aggressively defensively.
Ferland Mendy—7: Mendy’s adaption time Real Madrid has been positive. His explosive speed makes him such a weapon on the counter. He is very comfortable with both feet and unleashed an impressive right footed shot that troubled Remiro in net.
Casemiro—6.5: A few wayward passes which fortunately didn’t put the team into trouble. Offensively, he did well when switching the play and defensively was a rock producing a team high of 4 tackles.
Luka Modric—9: After a strong performance vs Eibar, Modric followed it up with an even better game tonight. Scored a great left footed volley, produced an assist for Fede Valverde and was composed as ever in the midfield.
Fede Valverde—8: The rave reviews keep coming and the Uruguayan deserves nothing less. His relentless engine has been a blessing to the Madrid midfield and he’s now scored 2 goals in his last 2 games.
Rodrygo—6.5: In terms of overall impact, it was not the Brazilians best game, but he still played well. Combines well with his teammates and his ”active” first touch, on countless occasions, was simply next level.
Eden Hazard—9: The Belgian is finding his feet at Madrid. Another superb performance. He had 9(!) dribble completed, was fouled 7 times, produced 4 shots, and had 2 key passes.
Karim Benzema—8: King Karim continues to produce the goods and scored the crucial equalizer before halftime to ease the pressure on Madrid heading into the break.
Gareth Bale—7.5: Despite the incessant whistles, the Welshman put in another great shift. It was his cross which started the play to set-up Modric’s goal. On a numerous occasions he roasted Nacho Monreal in a 1 v 1 duel.
Toni Kroos—6: Managed 1 key pass in his 15 minutes.
Isco—6.5: Somehow managed 2 key passes while only playing 8 minutes and probably should have scored a goal had he managed to get on the end of a good Gareth Bale cross.