Real Madrid: 5 burning questions after 1-0 win over Sevilla

Real Madrid, Toni Kroos (Photo by Mateo Villalba/Quality Sport Images/Getty Images)
Real Madrid, Toni Kroos (Photo by Mateo Villalba/Quality Sport Images/Getty Images) /
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Real Madrid, Karim Benzema
Real Madrid, Karim Benzema (Photo by Mateo Villalba/Quality Sport Images/Getty Images) /

When will Karim Benzema give us a complete 90 again?

It has been a while since the last time we saw Karim Benzema put in a complete shift for Real Madrid, and an injury is to blame. Vinicius Junior had the last touch on the winning own goal at Sevilla, but the reality is that Benzema’s initial pass to Ferland Mendy to spring the play was the goal-creating action here. Amidst a woeful performance from Benzema in what should have been a defining outing for the club legend, Benz’s pass to Mendy was a glimmer of the true quality of the glorious No. 9.

Benzema has to be much better in a do-or-die match at the Estadio Alfredo Di Stefano on Wednesday. The pressure is on Benz to play like he did in the first fixture against Inter Milan or in the 4-1 win over Huesca when he had an assist and bagged his only brace of the season.

With Eden Hazard injured, Benzema is, once again, Real Madrid’s best attacker. Madridistas need to see that on Wednesday, otherwise we could be reading some grim headlines on Thursday morning.

Is Toni Kroos the biggest key to victory?

Toni Kroos didn’t put up impressive numbers on Matchday 12 as an individual, and he didn’t have any standout moments for Los Blancos. But from what I saw, he was essential to Real’s success. The German international was the calm in the storm, commanding the ball in the middle of the park, directing traffic, and putting teammates in good positions to move the ball forward and keep the lead in the face of mounting pressure from Sevilla.

He is Real Madrid’s leader in key passes and passes into the final third in the Champions League this season, according to Kroos is still one of La Liga’s best chance-creators, and, as we saw at the San Siro, he may very well be the best passer in all of European football.

Next. Real Madrid Player Ratings at Sevilla. dark

So Kroos could be the man to make the difference on Wednesday night against Borussia Monchengladbach. The Foals have a lot of star quality in midfield, namely Bayern Munich target Denis Zakaria (who should really be a Real Madrid target, too, if we are being honest). Kroos, though, is on another level with the way he controls matches, especially against the quality of opposition in the Champions League.