Real Madrid’s hopes of challenging Atletico Madrid to this season’s La Liga title took another bitter blow on Saturday when a spirited Levante side beat them 2-1 to inflict a first league defeat since November 28 on Zinedine Zidane’s side.
The Madrid manager will undoubtedly look back on the game and pick out some positive but also a number of negative performances within his star-studded side to explain why Levante were able to come to the Spanish capital and cause such havoc.
✔️ GOOD PERFORMANCE
Thibaut Courtois: 8.0
It’s not often that Madrid are forced to call upon their shot-stopper to put on a superb performance but fortunately for Zidane’s team they have an exceptional goalkeeper in Thibaut Courtois.
Whether it was a stunning save to block Sergio Leon’s free-kick in the opening stages of the game, an essential clearance from Marti Roger’s cross midway through the first half for the Beglian international’s save from Levante’s failed penalty in the 64th minute, Courtois undoubtedly showed his worth in a game that his team mates sorely let him down.
❌ BAD PERFORMANCE
Eder Militao: 0
With a recurring knee injury ruling club captain Sergio Ramos out of the game, Saturday’s clash with Levante was Eder Militao’s chance to step up and show Zidane what he could do. He lasted just eight minutes on the pitch.
Despite initially being handed a yellow card by the referee for taking down Levante’s Sergio Leon when he was through on goal, a VAR review then confirmed how daft the challenge was and Miliato was given a straight red card.
Not only was it a stupid challenge that put Madrid on the back foot from the start of the match, but it also must have done the Brazilian defender no favours as he continues to try and earn a starting spot in Zidane’s team.
Raphael Varane: 6
Although Raphael Varane will undoubtedly point to his partner in defence, Miliato, getting sent off as to the real reason Madrid were beaten by Levante, there’s little doubt over the French international putting in another poor performance for Zidane’s side.
Although Varane won all of his headers on the night, the central defender failed to attempt - never mind win - a single tackle against Levante, didn’t manage a single interception and only made two passes into the final third over the course of the 90 minutes.