Real Madrid were on fire to start the 2014/15 campaign, with new signing James Rodríguez feeding the voracious front three of Cristiano Ronaldo, Karim Benzema, and Gareth Bale. Virtually no side could stand in the way of the All Whites in late 2014 and Athletic Bilbao were an especially notable victim, getting thrashed 5-0 at the Bernabéu.
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That game may have been the perfect example of Carlo Ancelotti’s attacking tactics, as positional interchanges, player tendencies, freedom of expression, & a vertical directive meshed to produce incredibly effective and (depending on your view) aesthetically pleasing football.
The Bernabéu oo’ed and ah’ed as quick passing combinations disorganized Athletic’s block, resulting in a lead inside only 2 minutes. If it wasn’t already game over from then on, Madrid basically sealed the deal with their third goal; the BBC played straight through the heart of the defense and scored a tap-in.
That move — more than any other throughout Ancelotti’s tenure — might be the picture perfect representation of ‘Carloball.’