What a week it was for Real Madrid and for La Liga. For the first time in a long time we saw huge changes in the overall scenario of the league and of individual teams.
Real Madrid and Atletico Madrid went head to head in Copa Del Rey semi final first leg and Real Madrid thrashed Atletico 3-0. That should probably put them in their place as Atletico Madrid had not won a single game against Real Madrid since the turn of the century just 12 months ago.
Credit goes to them, without much money or superstars they were able to a high intensity game with Real Madrid. They played bad, brutal, killer pace football but Real Madrid replied with more intensity, with more brutality and with more killer pace football.
Modric was at the center of it all. And it is about time that Real Madrid and its fans start to give him the recognition he deserves. Talking about deserved respect, Di Maria was shown plenty when he got substituted against Villarreal in the weekend La Liga game which Real Madrid won 4-2 (goals from Bale, Benzema, Jesse and then Benzema again ). It must have been a refreshing feeling for Ancelotti seeing all of his 3 forwards score a goal in the same game.
Jesse is another player who has come off age this season. At the start of the season he said his target was to get as much football with the first team as possible and score 10 goals for the season. I think he should rise above that and set himself a target of 20-25 goals the rate he is going at.
He not only has scored goals but really important ones. He scored a crucial goal against a difficult match with Athletic Bilbao. After that he scored against Atletico Madrid in the semi final and then scored against Villarreal too. Remember, Villarreal is the side which has won the most number of away games apart from the top 3 and have not lost a game by more than two goal margin all this season.
Saturday saw Real Madrid win and Atletico Madrid lose (2-0 away from home) and that meant that Real Madrid went to the top of the league with 57 points and a superior goal difference (margin of only 2 I think) against Atletico Madrid. It that was not tight enough for you guys this stage of the season then how about what Sunday threw up. Barcelona won their away game 1-4 (Messi scored twice and damn to Ronaldo did not score against Bilbao and neither against Atletico Madrid) and went top of the league with 57 points but a superior goal difference to Real Madrid.
Yup. You heard that right. Top 3 teams in La Liga are all on 57 points. All have lost 2 games and have drawn 3. A margin of seven goals differentiates between the three at the top. I don’t know the last time a title race got this tight, anywhere in the football world.
All in all it was a wonderful week packed with lots of changes in every aspect of the game. Real Madrid lost Ronaldo for another 3 games for his red card against Athletic Bilbao and Gareth Bale, again, stepped up against Villarreal in Ronaldo’s absence.