After the craziness of last week, an exhausted and successful Real Madrid starting XI took a well-deserved break, allowing Carlo Ancelotti to do some necessary rotations in the team. However, it soon became clear that Atletico players were far more focused to achieve their objective of playing Champions League football. All in all, I think the team’s average grade is a 6, so it’s no surprise that most ratings will oscillate around this score. A very ‘meh‘ performance overall from a team needed to rest and stretch some legs.
Andriy Lunin—6: Considering he is a keeper who barely plays, the best we can say about Lunin tonight is that he made no major mistakes, even though he also didn’t have big moments or contributions. Atlético produced several big chances, but Lunin only had to make one major save since the others went off target. He was also not particularly helpful with ball distribution.
Lucas Vázquez—5.5: Not the best day for Lucas. Lacked chemistry with Camavinga and Asensio, so we could say he lacked a good partner on the right to help him create chances. It says a lot about the defensive line that Lucas might have been the most decent one when playing out from the back. Struggled to contain the threat of Carrasco from the left.
Eder Militao—5: Unfortunately our dear Eder continues his poor end-of-season form. Had some troublesome turnovers under the Atlético press, but most importantly, defensively he continues to look as if he had regressed to his 2020 version. Goes out of position frequently and when he does, he rarely wins those duels. This behavior leaves gigantic gaps in the line behind him that Casemiro must compensate for.
Jesus Vallejo—6.5: It might seem weird to give Vallejo a higher grade than Militão or Lucas considering he’s the one who committed the penalty offense. However, apart from the penalty error, I thought this was a positive game from Vallejo. Despite always looking a bit anxious, he had several good clearances and last-ditch interventions. On the ball, just like the rest of the defense, he didn’t contribute much and also got caught in turnovers.
Nacho—6: On the ball, he contributed very little. Almost no progressive passing and several turnovers that led to Atlético attacks. In defense, he didn’t have that much trouble with Correa, although in the second half, switching Militão for him at center-back actually made the defensive line more chaotic.
Casemiro—5: Still on well-deserved holidays, can’t blame him. Positionally a mess because he had to cover for Militão’s madness, and was not as sharp as usual at winning duels. Another source of turnovers for Atleti.
Toni Kroos—6.5: Clearly not at his best, but I think he did what he could in a team that helped him very, very little to keep possession. While everyone else struggled to not lose the ball in awful ways and give proper progressive passes, he was often the only consistent source of forward passes and the safest outlet for the ball.
Camavinga—5: He was supposed to be the antidote in a game where Atlético pressed heavily but he didn’t play at the required level to overcome it. Camavinga still has a lot of lapses in concentration and that means he’s still not the most consistent passer. Had several turnovers under pressure that are just unacceptable for a midfielder of his profile. No significant ball carries to make it past the Atlético press.
Marco Asensio—6: Classic Asensio game: has some end product, but very little contribution to what the team does possession. Another source of major turnovers and one of them led to the penalty offense. Good contributions from set-pieces, though.
Rodrygo—7: Since Atlético deactivated Real’s passing from the back, the ball rarely reached Rodrygo. However, he managed to create danger when he did get the ball. His contributions led to a couple of chances towards the end of the first half, although he had less impact in the second half.
Luka Jović—4: What can I say: at least the other players, mistakes and all, looked like they were trying. Jovic didn’t. We don’t expect him to be Benzema, but he could have at least tried to come deeper and help against the tough Atlético pressing. And his lack of contribution in possession would be fine if he had some end product, but he also missed Real’s biggest chance of the game.
Vinicius—7.5: He wasn’t at his sharpest, but Vinicius is the kind of guy who gets things to happen on the pitch, no matter what. A breath of fresh air in a stale attack and a key to creating chances during the second half.
Fede Valverde—8.5: The best rating of the night goes to a Fede who didn’t get the memo that the team was on holiday. Focused, and dynamic, he was another player who got things to happen in a stale attack, moving all over the pitch to combine with teammates. We forget he has a great shot in him, so let’s hope he shoots more frequently in the future.
Modrić—6.5: Decent cameo and another source of stability in possession for a team that frequently lost the ball in dumb ways. However, it was clear he had a foot on the brake tonight.
Mendy—6: Atlético didn’t create that much danger on his side, so he did not have much work during his cameo appearance.
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