Despite enjoying several clear chances in a strong second half, VCF go home from Madrid empty handed
Valencia CF fell to a 2-0 defeat at the Santiago Bernabéu on Saturday night, bested by Real Madrid through a first half own goal and a late second half strike. A positive second period saw Marcelino’s men enjoy several chances, but they were unable to put them away on Matchday 14.
After opportunities for both teams in the early going, it was the home side who found the opening 8 minutes in, when a cross by Dani Carvajal was turned in by Daniel Wass as he attempted to head the ball clear.
Goalkeeper Neto produced a terrific save from Gareth Bale on the half hour mark, as both the goalkeeper and defence were called into action to gather up chances of varying degrees of danger. There was no change in the scoreline before the break, and Valencia CF went into half time trailing by just that single, unfortunate own goal.
It was a more ambitious VCF side that emerged for the second half. Santi Mina began the chances with a cross in for Kevin Gameiro, who was just centimetres away from the dangerous ball. Shortly after, when played through by Carlos Soler, the Frenchman was thwarted by Real Madrid goalkeeper Thibault Courtois.
Less than ten minutes into the second period, Mina broke away from the defence, controlled well and fired a shot over the top in the clearest opportunity up to that point.
With Real Madrid visibly nervous, Valencia CF grew in intensity: Gabriel Paulista brought down a Francis Coquelin flick-on and sent it over the crossbar.
As they searched to switch things up, Piccini and Kondogbia were brought on for Wass and Coquelin. Likewise, Batshuayi was introduced in place of Gameiro. Whilst Piccini made a block of a Marco Asensio shot, Batshuayi’s contribution was a goal that would be ruled out for offside, in the 78th minute.
Against the run of play, Real Madrid doubled their lead on 83 minutes, with Lucas Vazquez scoring for the home team. Whilst the second half performance was positive, Valencia CF went away from the capital empty handed.
LaLiga Matchday 14
Santiago Bernabeu, Madrid
Real Madrid 2 vs. 0 Valencia CF
Real Madrid: Courtois; Carvajal, Varane, Sergio Ramos, Reguilón; Marcos Llorente, Dani Ceballos (Isco, m. 80), Modric (Valverde, m. 71); Lucas Vázquez, Benzema and Bale (Marco Asensio, m. 63).
Goals: 1-0. M. 8: Wass (own goal). 2-0. M. 83: Lucas Vázquez.
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