Real Madrid Player Ratings from a Karim Benzema-inspired win over Athletic Bilbao

Real Madrid, Karim Benzema (Photo by Ion Alcoba/Quality Sport Images/Getty Images)
Real Madrid, Karim Benzema (Photo by Ion Alcoba/Quality Sport Images/Getty Images) /
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Real Madrid, Eder Militao, Ferland Mendy
Real Madrid, Eder Militao, Ferland Mendy (Photo by ANDER GILLENEA/AFP via Getty Images) /

The first 10 minutes of Athletic Bilbao vs. Real Madrid were breathtaking and featured a wondergoal from Karim Benzema, who scored twice in the fourth and seventh minutes. Bilbao pulled one back just three minutes after Benzema netted his brace. Thereafter, the game was still open, but the quality was lacking. And Real, playing without Luka Modric once more, could not maintain control of the match.

Thibaut Courtois, who was so impressive in the first match between these two old rivals, made another massive stop. Bilbao could have easily taken points off Los Blancos at San Mames, but the visitors managed to survive to extend their lead over Sevilla in first back to eight points.

Here are the player ratings from Real Madrid’s 2-1 win over Athletic Bilbao in LaLiga.

GK Thibaut Courtois

Another big-game performance from the world-class Belgian goalkeeper. I loved his save on Nico Williams, because the young forward went for a nutmeg finish that Thibaut Courtois anticipated. That is experienced goalkeeping.

Rating: 7.5

LB Ferland Mendy

Ferland Mendy had another decent performance. The left back completed 95 percent of his passes with a pair of interceptions and fouls drawn, as well as three dribbles completed. Although he wasn’t involved much in the attack, he played to his strengths and did a good job when helping out defensively against Inaki Williams.

Rating: 6.5

CB Nacho Fernandez

Nacho started for David Alaba, who was out with COVID-19. The veteran center back had one great intercepted cross, but he also had a few nervy moments defensively. He should have done better on Bilbao’s goal, too, as he did not move quickly enough to close down the shot. Nacho finished the match with a handful of clearances, a pair of blocked shots, and a trio of interceptions after he settled into the game. An above-average performance, all told, from the Spaniard.

Rating: 7.0

CB Eder Militao

Great work from Eder Militao, as usual, who may finally be getting wider recognition for his world-class displays this month. Militao was rarely troubled defensively and always made good, safe decisions to clean up play and keep Bilbao out of the box. The 23-year-old continues to be one of the major stars for Real.

Rating: 8.0

RB Lucas Vazquez

Although Lucas Vazquez was not nearly as shocking as against Cadiz, he still seriously lacked end product on the attacking end. His inaccurate crosses have been panned by Madridistas over the past couple of weeks, and they frustrated fans once again this Wednesday night. Dani Carvajal’s return cannot come soon enough. Vazquez nearly cost the team with one truly atrocious giveaway, too.

Rating: 5.0