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(3) points in La Liga and that’s all that basically matters. This was yet another La Liga game to forget. Real Madrid were unable to convert the chances they had in the first half. Then they let Malaga grow into the game in the second half, and eventually made this a last-second thriller, as Real Madrid completed an atrocious game overall. There are many points and aspects that should be carefully analyzed here.

Kiko Casilla: 5 – Kiko had a shocker. However, he wasn’t the only player who was bad. One would hope that a string of games would bring out the Espanyol version of Kiko, but it didn’t. The third conceded goal was his clear mistake and those distanced shots should be saved no matter what.

Dani Carvajal: 8 – Thank God that Dani is back. He once again commanded the whole right flank, constantly overlapping Lucas and arriving at the far post. Dani diligently defended against Castro and his presence covered a lot of previous issues.

Raphael Varane: 8 – Varane completed another great game. His positioning and interceptions were on point and he is rightfully one of the undisputed starters.

Vallejo: 7 – Just the second start for the talented youngster. In this game, Vallejo showed his strengths and weaknesses. His positioning, one-on-one duels, and tackling is already at a high level, as he showcased with a number of crucial stops. However, he still is a little bit hesitant when it comes to crosses. While the first goal is not entirely on him, he should have done a better job of closing Rolan.

Marcelo: 6.5 – A weird game from Marcelo. Going forward, he was almost the usual menace that we know of, but there are still some lapses in the defensive aspect of his game. While he didn’t have enough cover from Isco, who was supposed to be a left wide midfielder, it’s not an excuse to make such mistakes.

Lucas Vazquez – 7: Lucas, who is often a target of fans’ displeasure, displayed his second consecutive good performance. Today, his crosses were sharper and he nicely stretched the field for Carvajal. Also, his good hustling in the box and the tackle from Malaga’s defender should’ve resulted in a penalty for Madrid.

Toni Kroos – 5: Oh Toni. You don’t have many bad games, but when you do, they are shockers. Today, it wasn’t your day. You were awfully positioned in defense throughout the game. And then, you made a truly stupid misplaced pass which led to the Malaga’s first goal.

Casemiro – 7.5: It’s uncanny that our defensive midfielder is our fifth highest goalscorer this season. I repeat the DEFENSIVE MIDFIELDER. Once again, Casemiro used his physicality and great heading ability to rescue Madrid. It was a brilliant bullet header. However, it wasn’t a perfect performance as his positioning and decision making on the second goal was truly baffling.

Isco 7.5: Isco is the only offensive spark that Madrid currently has on the pitch, because Kovacic is still recovering and Dani Ceballos is chilling on the bench. Isco’s tendencies to be the focal point of all has its downsides. His complete positional freedom isn’t that beneficial to Madrid and his constant dropping to center-backs is head scratching. Apart from that, I can’t really complain…

Karim Benzema – 7.5: A solid game from Karim. He was at the right moment in the right place to tap the ball in. It was proper penalty-box killer instinct. It looks like he might be bouncing back from his awful spell and that’s certainly one of the few positives from this match.

Cristiano Ronaldo – 7.5: Ronaldo got a goal. Finally. And he did it in style to please the NPG-lovers as he missed the penalty and scored from the rebound. However, much like in the previous games, he was unlucky not to score more goals. Real Madrid has a special power to make every La Liga team transform their goalkeeper to peak Lev Yashin.

Luka Modric – 7: Luka Modric replaced Isco which was a bit of a strange substitution, but I guess we’re already accustomed to that. Luka was the usual calming aspect and he did win the penalty which ultimately gave the three points to Madrid. All hail Luka.

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