Real Betis 0-0 Real Madrid. A poor game and a poor result. Here is my reaction. On the way: Player ratings, post game quotes and a podcast with Kiyan.
Madrid were looking to bounce back after the defeat in the cup to Barcelona. They were still lagging behind in the league table and could not afford to slip up again. Dani Carvajal and Nacho Fernández were left out as Carlo Ancelotti went with Eduardo Camavinga at left-back. Lucas Vázquez was also favoured at right-back creating an almost new-look defence. Aurélien Tchouaméni joined Toni Kroos and Fede Valverde in midfield. Up top, it was the two Brazilian’s joined by the Frenchman and captain Karim Benzema. In-form talent Álvaro Rodríguez continued to be called up to the first team on the bench, and he was joined by the likes of Eden Hazard and Marco Asensio.
After a mixed start, Madrid looked to be ahead when Karim Benzema scored a delightful free-kick - only for the entire sequence to be brought back because of a hand-ball in the build up to the foul. The game really was a dry affair after this, with Madrid creating small chances from Fede Valverde and Vinícius Júnior. Betis also had a couple of sniffs but didn’t threat the goal of Thibaut Courtois, putting an end to one of the most forgetful halves of football seen in a while. The possession was there and some players were finding decent amounts of space in the final third, but to no avail. 0-0 at the break.
Should have tested Bravo by now. Got in enough good positions to do so and I'd attribute that a lot to the presence of Camavinga and Rodrygo. Their runs are allowing Vini to get into the box in good positions and that half space has opened up. Lots to improve on, still.— Kiyan Sobhani (@KiyanSo) March 5, 2023
The second half started off very similar, with Benzema coming very close for Madrid early on. This time he missed a sitter as the keeper matched his closed range effort. Thibaut Courtois was then called upon as he made a brilliant save to deny the hosts best chance of the game. Rodrygo Goes came close for the visitors after being supplied by Fede Valverde, but it ended up being another shot marginally off target. Dani Ceballos came on as a substitute and almost became the hero again, shooting just wide of the far post. Vinícius then went on a nice run into the box, but forced the keeper into a low save. Nacho Fernández then had a headed effort saved. Betis could have clinched it late on, but a brilliant strike thankfully whizzed just wide of the target. 0-0 the final score, and two more points lost forever. How frustrated are you with that showing?