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Immediate reaction: Girona 4-2 Real Madrid

Quick recap of Madrid’s defeat vs. Girona

Girona FC v Real Madrid CF - LaLiga Santander Photo by Alex Caparros/Getty Images

Real Madrid suffered a very poor defeat in La Liga against Girona this evening.

Real Madrid had key absentees in Karim Benzema and Thibaut Courtois for this trip, and their absence was magnified straight away. In front of a hostile Girona crowd, Los Blancos went down 2-0 within the first 25 minutes of the game thanks to Valentin Castellanos’ excellent brace.

The game itself was free-flowing; at least in the first half. Chances were being created on both ends of the pitch, but only one team found success in the opening period. Things got heated between Vinicius Jr. and Arnau Martinez, who has been tasked with handling the Brazilian. He had some success early on, but Vinicius was making regular inroads into the space left behind by the defender. Much to the crowd’s disappointment, Vinicius pulled one back for Madrid from close range in the 34th minute. Both Vinicius and Arnau finished the first half with yellow cards to their names.

Girona scored their two goals in the first half from a collective xG of 0.86. Madrid’s defense has not been this disappointing in recent times.

The disaster got worse in the second half, as Castellanos added two more goals close to the hour mark of the game. Madrid’s defense showed no signs of waking up as he kept poaching on his chances inside the penalty area. Bringing on Camavinga and Tchouameni did not alter Madrid’s luck. Castellanos was subbed off to a standing ovation from the crowd in the 72nd minute, as he was clearly done with his night with four goals against Real Madrid.

Despite scoring early in the second half, Girona was in no mood to settle down. They remained the better and more efficient of the two sides in the second half, creating transition opportunities at regular intervals. With the game done and dusted, Ancelotti brought on Mariano Diaz and Lucas Vazquez to see out the final minutes.

Real Madrid’s Champions League composure was nowhere to be seen. The lack of this composure resulted in repetitive attacking sequences that Girona countered with reasonable comfort. Madrid’s efforts to break the lines via Vinicius hardly saw any light on the left until the 84th minute. Vini Jr. pulled a low cross back into the box, which was converted by Lucas Vazquez to make it 4-2. Madrid found some spring in their steps and stitched together a few potent attacking sequences right after. However, that was a bit too late, and Girona cruised to a comfortable victory.

La Liga has been over for Real Madrid for some time now, but Ancelotti and his team must recalibrate quickly from this poor performance ahead of the critical weeks that are approaching.

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