Player Ratings

Real Valladolid 0-1 Real Madrid Player Ratings: Kroos shines as Madrid close gap in La Liga title race

Zinedine Zidane was able to rely on a select few stars in his injury-ravaged squad to claim all three points in a tough away match on Saturday night

10:51pm on Saturday 20th February 2021
Stefan Bienkowski

Real Madrid cut the gap between them and league leaders Atletico Madrid to just three points after a hard-fought 1-0 victory against Real Valladolid.

Zinedine Zidane’s injury-ravaged squad were dealt a further blow prior to kick off with an injury to star striker Karim Benzema, yet the capital side did just enough to claim a third, consecutive win in the Spanish top flight to keep their title hopes alive.

Real Valladolid v Real Madrid: Player Ratings, Match Stats, Player Stats

So who were the standout performers on the night in Spain?


Thibaut Courtois: 7.8

With a number of key defenders missing, Madrid were by no means their usual strong and sturdy selves and as a result Zidane’s team were once again left to rely upon the fortitude of Thibaut Courtois between the posts.

Despite being the overwhelming favourites for the tie, Madrid still had to fight off a number of chances from Valladolid and over the course of the game Courtois made five saves, in contrast to the one Jordi Masip made in the opposing goals.

Indeed, Courtois looked his very best just seven minutes into the game when he was forced into making a sensational save from Saidy Janjo or 23 minutes later when a header from Kike was met by some oustanding reflexes from the Madrid keeper.


Mariano Diaz: 5.7

With Benzema out injured, Zidane was forced to turn to back-up striker Mariano Díaz to play up front for Madrid and undoubtedly hoped the 27-year-old striker would grab the opportunity with both hands and make the most of it. Unfortunately he did nothing of the sort.

Not only did Mariano have one goal correctly ruled offside in the 23rd minute but he also had a second also correctly ruled offside just eight minutes later as two quick-fire examples of how the Dominican Republic international simply wasn’t up to the pace of the game and offered very little up front.


Toni Kroos: 8.4

Despite having so many players out injured, Zidane would have undoubtedly been counting his blessings when he watched Toni Kroos calling the shots and pulling the strings for his side in the centre of his team.

Amidst a disjointed team performance, the German midfielder still oozed confidence and technique throughout the match and provided the all-important breakthrough shortly after the hour mark with a wonderful, lofted cross deep into the box to find the head of Casemiro to head into the back of the net.

Real Valladolid v Real Madrid: Player Ratings, Match Stats, Player Stats

Latest news

Premier League

Premier League Table: Chelsea, Man City and Liverpool all win

The top three in the Premier League all won on Wednesday evening as Chelsea, Man City and Liverpool all battle it out for the title.

  • 6 hours

La Liga Table: Real Madrid go seven points clear with Athletic win

Real Madrid go seven points clear at the top of La Liga after beating Athletic Bilbao on Tuesday evening in the Spanish capital.

  • 6 hours
Predicted XI

How Man Utd and Arsenal could line up in the Premier League

The Ralf Rangnick era starts at Manchester United on Thursday, even if he won't actually be in the dugout...

  • 17 hours
European Assists King

European Assists King 2021/22: Muller stays top with Mbappe and Salah in close pursuit

Thomas Muller is now the outright leader in the standings, but Mo Salah and Kylian Mbappe have closed the gap and are level with Paul Pogba and Karim Benzema.

  • 1 day
Predicted XI

Front three good to go - How Liverpool could line up in Merseyside derby against Everton

Jurgen Klopp has several injury concerns, but his first choice front three of Mohamed Salah, Diogo Jota, and Sadio Mane are fit to play.

  • 1 day
Predicted XI

Lukaku back in the starting XI? - How Chelsea could line up against Watford

Romelu Lukaku hasn't started a game for Chelsea since his injury against Malmo in the Champions League, but he could be handed a start against Watford

  • 1 day

Most read