Real Madrid vs. Chelsea player ratings: Pulisic, Rudiger and Kante shine for Blues; Benzema saves Los Blancos


Getty Images

Chelsea and Real Madrid played to a 1-1 draw on Tuesday in their UEFA Champions League semifinal first leg in a match where chances were to be found in the first 45 minutes but scarce in the second. Christian Pulisic and Karim Benzema grabbed the goals with all left to play for in next Wednesday’s second leg.  

But how did each player perform in this one? Here are our player ratings for the match for every starter, substitute and manager.

All ratings are out of 10, and the higher the number the better. A zero would be a first-minute red card. A 10 would be like a dominant hat trick.

Craving even more coverage of the world’s game? Listen below and subscribe to ¡Qué Golazo! A Daily CBS Soccer Podcast where we take you beyond the pitch and around the globe for commentary, previews, recaps and more.

Real Madrid ratings

(GK) Thibaut Courtois

90

The Belgian made an absolutely fantastic save on Timo Werner in the opening minutes. Was out done by Pulisic on the goal but really didn’t have to worry about much the rest of the way. Handled crosses masterfully.

7

(DEF) Nacho

90

Poor on the goal by failing to stay with Pulisic, deciding to sit in goal and let Courtois try and clean it up.  It didn’t work, and it was costly. You have to force pressure on him.

5

(DEF) Raphael Varane

90

Similar to Nacho, I don’t understand why he did what he did on Pulisic’s goal. Go after him and let Courtois use his wingspan in goal to maybe make a save. Struggled in the air as well. Off night.

5

(DEF) Eder Militao

90

Absolutely fantastic. Got an assist with a wise ball in the box to Benzema and was quick to go after loose balls and clear out danger. Did very well to stay with Timo Werner when he checked to the ball. A rock.

9

(MID) Dani Carvajal 

76

Did not get all that far forward with Chelsea looking to go down the left through Mount. Was off balance a bit due to Chelsea’s speed. Was average.

5

(MID) Marcelo

76

Not very good defensively, was overly aggressive and didn’t play smart. But, his high ball into the box led to the goal, so that counts for something.

6

(MID) Casemiro           

90

Had his issues with Mason Mount, looking uncomfortable at times. Didn’t deal with the pressure and was far from his consistent self. Was better as the game went on though.

6

(MID) Toni Kroos           

90

Very quiet early. Lost his footing a bit on the wet pitch and rarely delivered a strong ball forward. Ended up completing over 92 percent of his passes and created a couple chances.

6

(MID) Luka Modric

90

Chelsea’s midfield gave him issues and very little room to work with. He was a non-factor in the final third and didn’t deal with the small space he had.

5

(FWD) Vinicius Jr.

65

Didn’t do much. In fact, his highlight was schooling Jorginho on the flank. Came off just after an hour for Eden Hazard. Will hope for better in the second leg.

5

(FWD) Karim Benzema

88

⚽ 29′ Almost scored midway through the first half with a lovely strike that hit the post and then scored a golazo from close that he took masterfully. This is the best season of his career, and he kept his team in it. 

8

Eden Hazard

Vinicius (66′)

Came off the bench for 24 minutes of action for a display which perfectly encapsulated his time at the club — boring and uneventful. He touched the ball 12 times and did nothing.

4

Alvaro Ordiozola

Marcelo (77′)

Another strong showing off the bench. Recorded a couple tackles, won the majority of his duels and looked sharp. Deserves more minutes.

7

Marco Asensio

Carvajal (77′)

Played 13 minutes and touched the ball eight times. did as much as Hazard.

5

Rodrygo Benzema (89′) Late sub to waste time. N/A

Zinedine Zidane

4

Went with a defensive lineup aiming to not concede at all, so he’ll be bothered. Really not that bad of a result in the end though, as he’ll be confident of scoring at Stamford Bridge. Some players may have lost their spots with this performance, but he’ll feel confident with where his team is.

5

Chelsea player ratings

(GK) Edouard Mendy

90

There was nothing he could do about Benzema’s wondrous opener and precious little else he had to do in a match where Madrid registered no more shots on goal. His distribution when Chelsea were playing out was solid however.

6

(DEF) Cesar Azpilicueta

65

On his 400th appearance for the club he showed his welcome versatility by swiftly settling into a right wing-back role that saw the 31-year-old tasked with bombing down the flank in support of Christian Pulisic and company. That he was substituted reflected the fact he had run himself into the ground in service of his team.

7

(DEF)  Andreas Christensen

90

An excellent performance without the ball, Christensen repelled much of the pressure down the Madrid left and comfortably led his team in ball recoveries with nine.

8

(DEF)  Thiago Silva

90

It was a rather quieter performance for Silva than many of those around him precisely because Madrid so rarely got near to the heart of the Chelsea defense. Still the veteran Brazilian was a solid figure with the ball at his feet and what little pressure came his way was robustly dealt with.

6

(DEF)  Antonio Rudiger

90

A performance of vision and elan, Rudiger was never afraid to step forward from defense and look for the ambitious pass. It paid off in wonderful fashion with the assist for Pulisic’s goal, which he coupled with a solid display without the ball as Chelsea largely held firm.

8

(DEF) Ben Chilwell

90

As Chelsea looked to punish Madrid’s weaknesses down the right Chilwell took on more of a peripheral role, though he did create chances for Werner and Mount while running plenty of hard yards down the flank.

6

(MID)  N’Golo Kante

90

An all-round midfield dynamo, he survived some early wobbles in possession to excel in advancing Chelsea up the pitch. His ability to spot Madrid passes before they were played meant he stood out in a midfield full of stars and Kante’s running when the ball came his way was invariably purposeful.

8

(MID)  Jorginho

90

A crucial intervention in the eighth minute denied Real Madrid a great shooting chance in the box. It was a rare moment in the spotlight for Jorginho, who otherwise kept Chelsea ticking over in a customarily solid performance.

7

(MID) Mason Mount            

90

Another game on the biggest stage where Mount emphatically rose to the occasion. His tactical versatility allowed Thomas Tuchel to play something between a 3-4-3 and a 5-3-2 with the youngster consistently dropping into spaces behind the Madrid midfield and creating menace for the Blues.

7

(FWD) Timo Werner

65

It is getting harder and harder to defend Werner by saying that at least he gets into spots to miss all these chances. His effort early on from close range was woeful, straight and soft enough to give Courtois a chance for a save he should never have been able to make. Clearly crippled of any confidence, the subsequent opportunities that came his way saw him take too many touches and allow Madrid to scramble back.

3

(FWD) Christian Pulisic

65

⚽ 14′ In a stunning first half Pulisic created as many chances as the entire Real Madrid team did. His goal was wonderfully taken, particularly in the composure he showed after an imperfect first touch, and he did not allow the defense to settle when they had the ball.

8

Hakim Ziyech

Werner (66′)

He brought just the attacking punch Chelsea need just after the hour, stretching the Madrid defense in behind and twice creating dangerous moments for the Blues soon after his introduction.

6

Kai Havertz

Pulisic (66′)

The German pressed hard and did not stint in his tracking back as Chelsea looked to hold on to a valuable 1-1 draw in the closing stages.

5

Reece James

Azpilicueta (66′)

When pressure came Chelsea’s way in the closing stages it was often James coming up with the block or chasing down the Madrid attacker.

5

Thomas Tuchel

3

From the outset it was clear Tuchel had got his tactics spot on, shifting his 3-4-3 into something more approximating a 5-3-2 that saw Chelsea dominate all the key areas with the driving runs of Kante and Mount exposing gaps in the Madrid side. Zidane responded shrewdly but Tuchel’s substitutes brought a jolt of energy just when Chelsea needed it.

8





Source link

Logo