Celta Vigo 0-1 Real Madrid (Bellingham). A clutch win away from home. Here is my reaction to the game. Up next: player ratings, post game quotes and a podcast.
The start of this season has been one with a lot of questions for Real Madrid. What formation, the goalkeeper,the lack of forwards; everything was up in the air. However, it’s been a decent start to the season till now, from a pure footballing point of view. Two wins out of two for Los Blancos, who took on Celta Vigo in their third straight away game for the season. Bellingham has been rightfully stealing all the headlines, scoring three goals and providing an assist in those two games to keep the scoring problems away, starting at the tip of the diamond yet again, just behind Rodrygo and Vinicius Junior. On the other end of the field, Kepa Arrizabalaga made his debut for the team, replacing Andriy Lunin, who’s had two decent games for the club. Eduardo Camavinga was missing from the starting lineup in the win over Almeria last week due to a small knock he picked up in training, but he had fully recovered and replaced Toni Kroos in the lineup. Nico Paz, the hugely talented Castilla prospect, made the bench yet again.
The game started off a bit weirdly for Real Madrid, with Celta Vigo adopting a high press and pushing Real Madrid and creating chances early on. They actually scored one right off the bat, within the first three minutes of the game, but there was an apparent foul on Kepa in the buildup of the goal, so it was disallowed. The injury woes continued for Real Madrid soon after that as Vinicius Junior picked up what looked to be a hamstring injury. He was subbed off for Joselu, and since then, it was just half chances for Real Madrid but nothing more than that. Rodrygo had a beautiful solo run, dribbling past two Celta Vigo players, but his shot was blocked. Fede Valverde was very, very solid in the first half yet again, doing so much defensive work but at the same time also being very lively on the offensive end. The midfield looked very good, although Bellingham probably would’ve liked to have had a bigger impact. He would’ve had a brilliant assist to his name if it weren’t for a clear offside on Joselu. Celta Vigo also had decent chances, but none were enough to score a goal. Zero goals at halftime.
Carlo Ancelotti continued with the same lineup for the second half, but Rodrygo started drifting to the left a bit more. Fede Valverde, on the other end, went on a bombing run into the attack and combined very well with Rodrygo, ultimately resulting in a shot for the Uruguayan that went just wide. Around the 62nd minute, Luka Modric came on for Eduardo Camavinga, who put in a solid shift as a left-central midfielder, providing a lot of good defensive coverage. Surprisingly, Toni Kroos replaced Aurelien Tchouameni, which was a bit strange. Tchouameni was having a good game and provided much-needed security to the defense. Right after he came on, Kroos was tackled very close to the box, resulting in a chance for Celta. Rodrygo, in the 66th minute, won a penalty for Real Madrid, trying to round the goalkeeper but getting fouled in the process. The Brazillian stepped up to take it himself, but unfortunately, the penalty was well saved by the Celta keeper. On the other end, one more good chance for Celta Vigo, but the shot was off-target. A few minutes later – inevitably so – Jude Bellingham scored from a brilliant header to give Real Madrid the lead. It was a Toni Kroos corner towards Joselu, who headed it towards the tall Englishman, and he did the rest. That’s four goals for Jude, top scorer in La Liga, the best player in the league. The team did well enough to keep the lead, and their perfect record stays intact. Three wins out of three. What did you think of this performance?