Friday, 4 March 2011

Match Report: Real Madrid 7 Malaga 0

Real Madrid closed the gap on Barcelona at the top of La Liga to seven points with seven goals as they defeated Malaga 7-0.

The build up to the match had been dominated by Jose Mourinho’s condemnation of his predecessor Manuel Pellegrini by saying if he were to leave Madrid, as the Chilean did last summer, he wouldn’t be found in Malaga but at a big club in England or Italy. As it turned out Mourinho, for once, didn’t need mind games or wind up tactics as it was his players that put Pellegrini firmly in his place.

Angel Di Maria and Cristiano Ronaldo fired warning shots within the first 10 minutes. However, it took 26 minutes for the home side to make the breakthrough, Karim Benzema flicking home Xabi Alonso’s free-kick. Real were now up and running and doubled their lead within 10 minutes, a catastrophic error from Manuel Gaspar – who suffered a torrid evening – allowing Di Maria to run through and slot past Wilfredo Caballero.

Marcelo added a third just before half-time thanks to a sumptuous chipped ball through from Di Maria and a thumping finish from the Brazilian full-back.

The second period offered the same as the first with Madrid’s power and pace too much for a weak and spiritless Malaga side. Ronaldo helped himself to a 26 minute hat trick, meanwhile Gaspar’s awful night was sealed with a red card on 67 minutes for a second bookable offence.

Benzema also got his second of the night with a header from Marcelo’s fine cross.

Overall Real did what they needed to do in destroying a poor Malaga side and closing the gap on Barca whilst Pellegrini’s Malaga look in severe trouble, still firmly rooted in the bottom three with 12 games remaining. Malaga may have a sheikh off the field but they desperately need a shake on it if they are to remain in the top flight.

Real Madrid 7 (Benzema 27 & 61, Marcelo 45, Di Maria 35, Ronaldo 50, 67 (pen) & 76) – Malaga 0

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