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Real Madrid cruised to a comfortable 4-0 win against Granada, at the Los Carmenes to keep the heat on Barcelona in the race for the La Liga title.
Zinedine Zidane’s men hit the ground running and were ahead within three minutes through James Rodriguez, after a Lucas Vazquez shot cannoned off the Colombian into the back of the net. Rodriguez then doubled the advantage for Madrid with a bullet header in the 11th minute.
Alvaro Morata made it three with a thumping effort from Danilo’s cross in the 30th minute, before the Spanish striker doubled his tally for the day with a beautifully worked individual goal five minutes later. Madrid took the foot off the pedal in the second period and coasted home with an important three points.
The win means, they are level on points with leaders Barcelona, with a game in hand as well. The manner of the victory will have pleased Zidane, considering most of the regular members of the first team were missing. Here is how the Madrid players fared on the night:
Barely involved in the first period, but made a couple of good saves in the second half. Will never get an easier clean sheet than this.
Growing in confidence, as he put in another solid shift on the right-hand side. Set up Morata for the third goal with a brilliant cutback. Had a chance to score in the second period.
Solid as ever in the heart of the defence. Also looked to get involved in the build up play. Dealt with whatever little Granada had to offer.
An easy game for the Madrid skipper as Granada hardly threatened in attack. Was alert to a couple of late forays from the opponents. Missed a few decent chances to score.
Unexpected starter, but despite having played so less, showed that he can be of use with a strong performance. Capped off the display with a fine cross for Rodriguez’ second goal.
Played freely alongside Casemiro. Moved the ball forward well, provided energy in the middle of the park. Can be more than reliable when needed.
Missed a sitter in the closing stages of the first period, but was solid defensively never letting anything develop for the home team.
A constant menace down the right-flank. His cross-cum-shot went off Rodriguez into the net for the opener, before he hared down from his own box to strike the crossbar at the other end.
Killed off the game within 11 minutes with two goals. Excelled playing in the hole behind the striker, distributed well and helped out defensively as well. Continues to stake a claim for involvement in the bigger games.
Was a little subdued when compared to the rest of his attacking partners. But there were glimpses of exceptional movement and some piercing runs down the left.
Proved his worth to the team once again with two beautifully taken goals in the space of five minutes. As usual grabbed the opportunity by scruff of the neck and did brilliantly. Needs to start more or Madrid risk losing him.
Replaced Asensio just before the hour mark. It was more of the same for the Frenchman – good movement, but can’t seem to find the back of the net.
Given a little run out in place of Casemiro for the last 25 minutes or so.
Came on for Vazquez with less than fifteen minutes to spare. Tried hard but unlucky not to score.