Real Madrid 2-0 Valencia: Karim Benzema and Toni Kroos on target against LaLiga strugglers as Zinedine Zidane’s side move five points behind leaders Atletico… but have played two matches more
- Real Madrid eased back into second spot in LaLiga with victory over Valencia
- Karim Benzema netted the first goal of the game after drilling in from 20 yards
- The hosts doubled their lead when Toni Kroos neatly slotted home a pull-back
- The result saw Zinedine Zidane’s men move within five points of leaders Atletico
Toni Kroos has too much class to give up LaLiga in February and he did more than his bit to make sure Real Madrid closed the gap on Atletico Madrid at the top of the table with a 2-0 win over Valencia.
Zinedine Zidane’s side are now five points off the top having played two more games than Diego Simeone’s team.
‘It could be that we have to win every game to win the league and even then it might not be enough but we have to keep going,’ said Kroos.
Real Madrid moved back into second place in LaLiga after a comfortable win against Valencia
Zinedine Zidane’s team are five points adrift of leaders Atletico after a dominant performance
It was his quick pinpoint pass that teed-up Karim Benzema for the opening goal on 12 minutes. It was one of 59 accurate passes in a first half that Real Madrid dominated and in which he held the baton and orchestrated the domination.
On 42 minutes he scored the second. It was a shot but it felt like another pass, crisp, clean and into the back of the net.
Nobody strikes the ball like Real Madrid’s German midfielder.
Real Madrid: Courtois, Carvajal, Varane, Nacho, Mendy, Modric (Isco 79), Casemiro, Kroos, Asensio (Arribas 71), Benzema (Mariano 79), Vincius Jr
Subs not used: Lunin, Altube, Victor, Miguel
Goals: Benzema 12, Kroos 42
Manager: Zinedine Zidane
Valencia: Domenech, Correia, Gabriel, Ferreira, Gaya, Wass (Lee 64), Rabic, Soler (Oliva 64), Guedes (Musah 46), Gomez (Cutrone 83), Vallejo (Gameiro 46)
Subs not used: Lato, Mangala, Blanco, Jason, Rivero
Booked: Rabic, Guedes, Correia
Karim Benzema hit the opener on 12 minutes after finishing superbly from the edge of the box
Real Madrid had plenty of chances between the two goals. Valencia keeper Jaume Domenech saved from Casemiro with his legs and blocked Luka Modric’s effort from distance. Benzema almost flicked in what would have been a second for him but Gabriel Paulista got across to block the effort.
Valencia had seen little of the ball in the first half and Javi Gracia, looking down from the stands of the Alfredo di Stefano stadium because he was serving a touchline ban, had seen enough and made two changes at the break.
Yunus Musah and Kevin Gameiro came on for Gonzalo Guedes and Manu Vallejo but there was little change in Valencia’s fortunes.
Courtois made his first save…
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