Real Madrid continued their unbeaten start to the season with a comfortable 3-0 win against bottom-placed Elche.

Defending La Liga champions Real Madrid ensured there was no hangover following their 3-1 win over Barcelona at the weekend by putting bottom-placed Elche to the sword.

Carlo Ancelotti’s side went into the game as overwhelming favourites and did justice to the moniker. Federico Valverde opened the scoring in the 11th minute as Real Madrid found an early foothold in the game. Second-half strikes from Karim Benzema and Marco Asensio saw the away side record another win.

Fresh from winning his first Ballon d’Or, Benzema was a lively presence up front and caused much nuisance in the Elche goal. He had two goals disallowed for offside on the night as several good Real Madrid moves fell flat at the final execution. David Alaba was also denied a goal on the night thanks to VAR.

The home side did have their moments but Andriy Lunin held firm in the Real Madrid goal to keep them at bay. All in all, it was a comfortable win for Real, who now have a firm grip at the summit of La Liga. The onus now is on Barcelona to keep within striking distance in the title race when they take on Villarreal. The Hard Tackle looks at how the Real Madrid players fared on the night.

Andriy Lunin: 7/10

The Ukrainian has been an excellent understudy to Thibaut Courtois and has stepped up well in the Belgian’s absence. Lunin had a busier night than he would have wanted but was able to rise to the challenge. He made particularly good saves from Helibelton Palacios and Nicolas Fernandez, preventing Elche from seizing any sort of control in the game.

Dani Carvajal: 7/10

A solid outing from the Real Madrid veteran who was a huge presence on the right flank. Carvajal can consider himself unlucky not to have ended the game with an assist thanks to VAR.

Eder Militao: 7.5/10

The centre-back is proving indispensable for Real Madrid and continued his fine run of form with another dominant display. He made a couple of good clearances and was always at hand to clear any imminent danger. Militao’s form will give Carlo Ancelotti much to think about. 

Antonio Rudiger: 7/10

The German international was a lively presence in the rearguard and held his own on the night. He also made several forward forays and was not afraid to make risky passes to get the attacks going.

David Alaba: 7/10

The Austrian started as the left-back on the night and found plenty of joy going forward. Alaba can count himself unlucky not to get onto the scoresheet as he had a strike overruled by VAR. He was also defensively solid and did not let much get past him.

Federico Valverde: 8/10

The Uruguayan has been a vital piece of the Real Madrid jigsaw in recent weeks and continues to go from strength to strength. He took his goal well and gave the visitors an early foothold in the game. Apart from that, Valverde was also a relentless runner who contributed to both attack and defence all game.

Toni Kroos: 7/10

It was a solid performance from the midfield maestro, who controlled the tempo of the game and kept things flowing for the visitors. While it was far from a vintage performance, the German international kept things simple and ensured that the ball was moving.

Luka Modric: 7/10

He looked slightly tired following the exertions against Barcelona in El Clasico. Modric was involved in several build-ups and showed his eye for making the right pass on numerous occasions. Another player who did what was needed on the night with minimal fuss.

Rodrygo Goes: 8/10

The Brazilian was simply unstoppable at times and gave the Elche defence plenty to worry about. His directness, pace and trickery saw him get the better of the opposition several times and earn two assists on the night. Rodrygo combined well with Benzema and carved out several goalscoring opportunities. 

Vinicius Junior: 6/10

Vinicius blew hot and cold on the night and failed to get on the scoresheet. He had his moments and made a few purposeful darting runs. However, he lacked the usual clinical edge in front of the goal.

Karim Benzema: 8/10

The Frenchman put up a performance that outlined his credentials as the Ballon d’Or winner. Benzema could have had a hat-trick had he timed two of his runs right and avoided the offside calls. Benzema linked up well with the players around him and showed great movement off the ball.


Aurelien Tchouameni: 6/10

Tchouameni replaced Modric in the 62nd minute but never quite got going. It was, by all admissions, a rather meek outing for the Frenchman.

Marco Asensio: 7/10

It was a tidy performance from the Spaniard, who made some good runs and was rewarded with a late goal for his efforts. 

Eduardo Camavinga: N/A

Camavinga came on for Vinicius in the 80th minute but had little time to make an impact.

Lucas Vazquez: N/A

He replaced Carvajal in the 88th minute but had little time to impact proceedings.

Nacho Fernandez: N/A

Real Madrid’s final change of the night,

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