As is so often the case at the Wanda Metropolitano, Real Madrid and Atletico Madrid saw out a tough 0-0 draw. Zidane surprised fans by including 21-year-old Fede Valverde into the midfield three in place of James Rodriguez. There were opportunities for both sides, but it was a central battle between Thomas Partey and Toni Kroos — each performing as the metronome to their respective sides — which dominated proceedings. Despite the gritty draw, there were some good performances and continuation of good form from many key Real Madrid players. Full match ratings below:
Thibaut Courtois—5.5: Booed and whistled throughout, but faced only 1 shot on target. Madrid’s defense continues to improve and has now picked up their third consecutive clean sheet. The Belgian struggled with the ball at his feet and on countless occasions blasted the ball up field to no particular target when their were options to play feet.
Dani Carvajal—5.5: Far too many heavy touches and sloppy passes. Defensively was sound, but contributed very little to the attack with a number of crosses being over-hit.
Raphael Varane—6: For the most part, dealt well with the threat provided by Diego Costa and Joao Felix. Picked up a yellow after a second late challenge on Joao Felix and had a few misplaced passes, but overall did well to help keep Atleti off the scoreboard.
Sergio Ramos—7.5: The captain’s fine form continues. Had a team high of 3 tackles and was crucial in plugging gaps in the Madrid defense.
Nacho—7.5: A solid performance from the Canterano. All three of Madrid’s best opportunities came from a cross from Nacho’s left foot. He had 2 interceptions, 2 tackles, and 4 recoveries.
Casemiro—7.5: Another good game from the Brazilian, with 2 tackles, 2 interceptions, and 2 clearances.
Toni Kroos—8: Real Madrid’s best performer was the German. Nearly scored an impossible half volley from about 25-yards-out. Had a team high of 3 key passes and 98 touches. All of Madrid’s play went through the German who has returned to form after the Paris debacle.
Fede Valverde—6: It’s difficult to evaluate Fede Valverde’s performance. There were moments where he was great and showed off his impressive composure and passing ability (particularly with his head) but then there were moments where it felt like was playing within himself and too conservative.
Gareth Bale—6: Had success taking on Lodi and Saul 1 v 1, but his involvement in the Madrid attack was too fleeting. Looked like he was going to take the game by the scruff of the neck early on with some blazing runs down the wing and his impressive cross-field passes, but like the whole of the Madrid attack, struggled to find rhythm. Had one great opportunity in the second half after Nacho slid a low drive cross to the top of the box, but the Welshman leaned back and skied the shot over the bar.
Eden Hazard—3: Very underwhelming performance from the Belgian. Never could find his groove.
Karim Benzema—6.5: It took the Frenchman until the second half to really grow into the game, but created Madrid’s best chance with a difficult header about 15-yards from goal which resulted in a miraculously save from Jan Oblak.
Luka Modric—7: The Croatian brought fresh-legs and energy to the middle of the pitch. Combined well with Gareth Bale on the right flank. Had 23 passes with a 100% completion rate.
James Rodriguez—5.5: Brought on in the 76th minute of Eden Hazard and was stationed on the right wing. Didn’t see much of the ball and seemed like he would have had more of an impact if moved centrally.
Luka Jovic—N/A: Came on in the 87th minute for Karim Benzema.