Zidane insisted more than ever on the importance of the duel against Huesca, “a final” for the French coach, and his team responded with a reliable victory, which reported to Madrid the great news of the Eden Hazard’s scoring return and that even allowed some of the essentials to be freed from the load of minutes with their mind set on the duel against Inter on Tuesday, also at Alfredo Di Stéfano and that can mark the future of the white team in the Champions League.
With Hazard starting for the first time this season, he had want to see the Belgian and his connection with BenzemaThis one, yes, better tuned than that of the French ‘9’ with Vinicius, but the start of the game was marked by a slow pace, with a leisurely touch. And it was a time more conducive to the aperitif than for strong emotions. In this calm, Huesca warned of their condition as a tough team to fight despite not yet knowing the victory on their return to the elite. Courtois earned his salary one more day deflecting a shot from Rafa Mir loaded with poison.
White ball possession but Zidane’s pupils are very static. With this approach, the enormous talent of Modric had to appear to put a ball with music through his classic hit from outside, to which Hazard arrived in a hurry and was forced to finish in an acrobatic position over the rival door. The duel was still lazy and Madrid, with little mordant, threw itself back into the hands of Ramos’ formula as a striker, the one that resulted in Mönchengladbach, and that again generated the most dangerous occasion in a header from the white captain to the center of Marcelo who ruined Andrés Fernández as best he could. The Huesca reply, minutes later, with an excellent center from Ontiveros from the left that Sergio Gómez finished off high.
Courtois, Lucas Vázquez (Mendy, min. 52), Ramos, Militao, Marcelo, Valverde (Isco, min. 60), Casemiro (Kroos, min. 69), Modric, Asensio (Rodrygo, min. 60), Benzema and Hazard (Vinicius, min. 60).
Andrés Fernández, Maffeo, Pulido, Siovas, Luisinho (Gastón Silva, min. 84), Borja García (Eugeni, min. 57), Mosquera, Nwakali (Sandro, min. 57), Sergio Gómez (Ferreiro, min. 46), Rafa Mir and Ontiveros (Javi Galán, min. 46).
1-0: min. 40, Hazard. 2-0: min. 45, Benzema. 3-0: min. 54, Valverde. 3-1: min. 74, Ferreiro. 4-1: min. 90, Benzema.
González Fuertes (Asturian Committee). He admonished Siovas and Sandro for Huesca.
Match of the eighth day in LaLigaSantander played at the Alfredo Di Stéfano stadium behind closed doors.
The minutes passed and the sensation began to become typical of another match for Madrid, very stuck against the tactical rigor of Huesca. The best news for Madrid: the combinations between Hazard, Benzema and Modric due to the left profile of their attack, because when good players get together things usually happen. Insisting on that area of the field, Zidane’s team was pushing their rival towards their own area. However, the 1-0 was the result of a much simpler action. Hazard, the expected one, received the ball away from the rival area, but the ball was adjusted towards the left leg and nailed his shot in the net with no possible response by Andrés Fernández. The Belgian did not celebrate, despite seeing the door more than a year later, as if more than a prize was a liberation.
The goal gave way to some good minutes for Madrid, also released by the advantage on the scoreboard. Lucas Vázquez, very active in defensive work from that right lane that seems to have become his due to circumstances of the script, focused so that Benzema brought her down with his chest with great quality and housed her in the goal opposite shot with left leg. 2-0, a placid advantage at halftime in a game that seemed to have been complicated and a feeling of relief among the white players on their way to the changing rooms.
Judgment and changes
Madrid needed a solvent victory to clear up doubts and the outlook was going to become even clearer after the break. Again Hazard and Benzema combined, and the French ended up centering so that Valverde shot without mercy. The Uruguayan is inspired, since he has already scored three goals in the league and is, together with Benzema, Madrid’s top scorer in the championship. With the game on track, it was time for the break thinking about the momentous match against Inter. They left to the bench four fixed in the appointment in front of the Italians, like Lucas Vázquez, Valverde, Asensio and Hazard, and Mendy and three in need of merit entered: Isco, Rodrygo and Vinicius. As if it were a pre-established script, the third was exhibited in speed in his first action on the green and assisted Benzema in search of redemption, but the French striker finished high.
The game seemed so resolute that Zidane even allowed himself the luxury of giving twenty minutes of rest to Casemiro, the most essential with Ramos’s permission, but Huesca still had something to say with Ferreiro’s goal. There was a quarter of an hour left to play and the odd cloud was drawn over the Madrid team, which nevertheless hardly suffered until the end. In fact, Benzema rounded off the afternoon with his second goal to sign a win that allows Madrid to maintain a good step in the league while waiting to face another final against Inter.