Real Madrid moved to the top of La Liga with a hard-fought 2-1 victory over Las Palmas on Saturday, thanks, in part, to a brilliant performance from Eduardo Camavinga. The French midfielder, who showed his quality in both attack and defense, won Man Of The Match honours on Saturday night’s Managing Madrid Post-game Podcast.
Real Madrid started the game slowly and struggled to create clear chances in the first half, though did have two very good chances to take the lead early on. Las Palmas, who are one of the pleasant surprises of La Liga this season under Pimienta, defended well and posed a threat on the counter-attack. The hosts took the lead in the 53rd minute, when Javier Munoz finished off a swift transition goal.
Despite the stalemate in the first half, Camavinga was one of the bright spots, as he put in several important challenges while being impossible to dispossess. He evaded pressure masterfully, and his coverage on defense was excellent. The Frenchman posted a game-high five tackles on the night while completing 97.1% of his passes — the best mark of any Real Madrid starter. He was also fouled six times — more than any player on the field.
Camavinga is ballin right now— Managing Madrid (@managingmadrid) January 27, 2024
Real Madrid needed a response after the Munoz goal and they got one from Camavinga, who set up Vinicius Jr for the equalizer in the 65th minute. The 21-year-old played a perfectly weighted ball over Las Palmas’s line for the Brazilian, who fired past Alvaro Valles from close range. It was Vinicius’ 5th goal of the league campaign.
Camavinga, who played at the base of midfield, was omnipresent before being taken off in the second for Aurelien Tchouameni who scored the game-winner. Carlo Ancelotti explained after the game that Camavinga was tired at that point.
Real Madrid held on to secure their 17th win in La Liga this season, putting them two points clear of second-placed Girona, who play on Sunday. Carlo Ancelotti praised the team’s character and spirit, as they showed once again their ability to come from behind and win. As Ancelotti put it, Las Palmas’s goal “woke the team up”.