Valencia 1-1 Real Madrid: 3 reasons why the game ended in a draw | LaLiga 2019-20
Real Madrid go level on points with La Liga leaders Barcelona as they salvaged a 1-1 draw against Valencia in an exciting clash at the Estadio de Mestalla on Sunday night.
Zinedine Zidane's men walked into the game confidently and dominated the early exchanges with the hosts looking comfortable letting their opponents break them down as they focused on counter-attacks.
The game came to life in the final 20 minutes as Carlos Soler broke the deadlock with an eight-yard effort 12 minutes from time. However, just when it was beginning to look like Los Ches would take home all three points, Karim Benzema struck home a dramatic late goal to salvage a point for the Madrid giants.
The win extends Real Madrid's unbeaten run to 11 games, having won eight of them and drawn three. They will now turn their attention to Wednesday's El Clasico as they hope to get the better of arch-rivals Barcelona, who dropped points against Real Sociedad on Saturday.
Without further ado, we take a look at three reasons why Real Madrid and Valencia ended up sharing the spoils:
#3 Valencia's compact formation frustrated the visitors
Albert Celades took the cautious road against Real Madrid as he opted for a more compact 4-1-4-1 formation over a 4-4-2. It was no surprise that Valencia prioritized their defence considering the absences in their attacking line with strikers Maxi Gomez and Kevin Gameiro both missing the clash due to injuries.
The Spaniard made three key changes to the squad that established a crucial win over Ajax in the Champions League in midweek, one of which was dropping a striker for the safety of a defender.
Los Ches remained out of possession for most of the first half but managed to stifle their opponents' advances with their tight formation and mostly looked for opportunities to counter-attack instead of foraying forward. Their tactical play subsequently forced Real Madrid to be patient with their build-up as they continued to create chances before the break albeit without much success.