La Liga 2017/18: Real Madrid 0-1 Villareal - Player ratings
Real Madrid hosted Villareal in La Liga with the hopes of acquiring all three points, which despite all their efforts they could not.
The first half saw Madrid control the proceedings. They looked better and this was visible in the number of shots taken on goal. However, their finishing let them down big time. The first half ended in an eventful 0-0 draw with everything to play for in the second half.
The second half started in the same fashion as the first half with Real Madrid coming out with all guns blazing. Villareal were resilient and did not allow even an inch of space to the Los Blancos forwards while counter-attacking with an intent on occasions. They were then rewarded for their brave performance with a late Fornals goal as they sealed the match with it.
Here are the player ratings for either side.
Keylor Navas - 6.5/10
He had one of the busier days of his career between the posts. Villareal were threatening and they did break his resolve towards the end for the game's solitary goal. He was unlucky to have parried Unas' shot into Fornals' path for Villareal's only goal.
Dani Carvajal - 6.5/10
The Spaniard was full of energy as he bombarded up and down with pace. He was solid defensively and always available for a pass. However, his end product was not particularly at the level we have been accustomed to as Real struggled to break Villareal's defence.
Nacho Fernandez - 5/10
This was a poor game by the Spaniard. He made important tackles and interceptions but also showed signs of rustiness, especially in the second half. He was caught upfield as Villareal countered and scored.
Raphael Varane - 6/10
Varane had a decent game as he dominated and won everything that came his way in the air. He won headers, made blocks, and clearances while being a calm head in the heart of the Real Madrid's defence.
Marcelo - 6.5/10
Back in the left-back role after his return from injury, he produced a mixed performance. He did make a couple of penetrating runs in attack and provided quite a few fine deliveries into the box. He, however, was guilty of giving too much space on his side which, fortunately, was not exploited.
Casemiro - 7/10
The Brazillian gave a good defensive display in the middle of the park as he won everything coming his way. He broke up plays and initiated attacks. After coming under a lot of criticism, this was a game, he could take positives from.
Toni Kroos - 7/10
Ever since his move to Real Madrid, Kroos has been Real Madrid's engine. Today was no different. He sprayed passes throughout the pitch and delivered tempting set pieces. However, it was just not enough to unlock Villareal's defence.
Luka Modric - 5.5/10
Modric looked sharp in possession and enjoyed the ball at his feet. However, he just could not deliver the final ball quite as well as Madrid fans have been accustomed to. The X-factor was missing from his game and it did show in the final result.
Isco - 6.5/10
The young Spaniard ran the show for Madrid in the first half. He floated all over the pitch and sprayed passes with varying ranges to his teammates. However, he did fade away in the second half and was replaced by Vazquez.
Gareth Bale - 6/10
Gareth Bale looked dangerous with the ball but his finishing radar was quite off. He was involved in the build-ups and looked sharp upon his return to the starting eleven. He even contributed defensively and tracked the runs of opposition full-backs on a number of occasions.
Cristiano Ronaldo - 4.5/10
Ronaldo could not win the match for Real Madrid and his performance was not quite up to the standards he has set for himself. He missed a lot of opportunities, a few of them clear-cut, and generally, was not much involved in too many build-up plays.
Lucas Vazquez - 6/10
He was introduced in place of Kroos but he, for all his efforts, could not change the game in Madrid's favour.
Marco Asensio - 7/10
Just like his substitute partner Vazquez, Asensio's introduction could not sway the game in favour of Real Madrid. He rushed his shot towards the end of the game and missed a good chance to score.