Rafa Benitez Lives To Fight Another Day As Real Madrid Struggle Past Eibar
Real Madrid recovered from their Clasico humiliation at the hands of Barcelona last week to record a comfortable 2-0 win over Eibar on Sunday.
Rafa Benitez’s Real Madrid side were under immense pressure heading into their encounter against Eibar having lost their last two La Liga matches against Sevilla and Barcelona.
Rafa Benitez made 3 changes to the Los Blancos starting line up that got crushed 4-0 by Barcelona last week. Nacho and Dani Carvajal came in for the injured Sergio Ramos and Marcelo, while Mateo Kovacic replaced Karim Benzema.
In a cagey affair at the Municipal de Ipurua, Welsh winger Gareth eased Benitez’s nerves when he headed in Luka Modric’s cross to give Real Madrid the lead at the stroke of half time.
Cristiano Ronaldo doubled Madrid’s lead in the 82nd minute through the penalty spot after substitute Lucas Vazquez was tripped by Dani Garcia in the 18 yard box.
As a result of this victory, Real Madrid currently lie in 3rd spot in the La Liga table – 6 points behind FC Barcelona and 2 points behind Club Atletico de Madrid.
Rafa Benitez: It was a team victory
Speaking to the media after his side’s 2-0 win over Eibar, Rafa Benitez praised his side’s ability to bounce back from the heavy defeat against Barcelona.
“Today was a team victory,” said Rafa Benitez (via @RMadridHome). “Our first goal was rehearsed all week.”
“We are in November and we’ve had many injuries. But I am optimistic.”
“We will fight in every match until the end. All those who played today were exceptional. The whole team worked hard today.”
On Ronaldo’s performance on the night, Benitez said, “I am delighted with Cristiano Ronaldo. He scored and worked for the team.”
“Eibar is a tough and aggressive team. That’s why I take a lot out of this victory. The players never surrender and the fans know they must do the same.”
Rafa Benitez on borrowed time despite narrow win over Eibar
Real Madrid manager Rafa Benitez was under immense pressure heading into Sunday’s La Liga clash away to Eibar. Although his team came away with a nervy 2-0 win over a mid table Eibar side, Benitez’s future at Real Madrid is far from certain.
Despite his team leading the league table for almost 2 months, Benitez has been criticised by sections of the Spanish press for his pragmatic and often defensive approach to the game. A 3-2 defeat to Sevilla just before the International break raised several eyebrows amongst the members of the local media.
But many believe that the humiliating 4-0 defeat to Barcelona in last week’s Clasico at the Santiago Bernabeu has effectively sealed Benitez’s fate. Florentino Perez, who gave Rafa Benitez a public vote of confidence following the Clasico defeat, will not hesitate to pull the trigger if Real Madrid slip up again any time soon.