Real Madrid vs. Atletico Madrid Takeaways: The best there is under pressure

Real Madrid (Photo by OSCAR DEL POZO/AFP via Getty Images)
Real Madrid (Photo by OSCAR DEL POZO/AFP via Getty Images) /
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Real Madrid
Real Madrid (Photo by Diego Souto/Quality Sport Images/Getty Images) /

Real Madrid remind everyone they are still the team to beat

Atletico Madrid were definitely the best team in La Liga coming into this match. Beyond their elite defensive work, Los Rojiblancos finally looked lively in the attack after a down year in front of goal in 2020-2021.

Joao Felix was in high gear, Luis Suarez was banging home the goals with his new club, and former Real man Marcos Llorente was very much a credible secondary goal-scoring threat.

But on Matchday 13 at the Estadio Alfredo Di Stefano, none of those three players carried a real threat to Real Madrid. Zinedine Zidane gameplanned perfectly, Raphael Varane and Sergio Ramos held down the fort, Casemiro was all over the place as the Man of the Match, and Joao Felix and Luis Suarez were subbed off after doing next to nothing.

Real Madrid controlled the midfield against Atleti, with Toni Kroos orchestrating play just as he did twice against Inter Milan and earlier this week against Borussia Monchengladbach. The big-game midfielder had a big-game performance, as did his partner-in-crime Luka Modric.

With this win, Los Merengues served a reminder to the rest of La Liga. They are still the reigning champions and are not to be overlooked despite a very rough patch. There are still questions left to answer, but with their defense and midfielder, Real Madrid are more than capable of winning the league. Despite being behind Atleti in the table, they are the favorites to win the league after this splendid display.