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Match Analysis: Villarreal 0-2 Real Madrid

Sports Mole dissects the action as Real Madrid record a 2-0 win over Villarreal in La Liga.

Real Madrid made it three straight La Liga wins with a 2-0 success at Villarreal on Saturday afternoon.

Goals from Luka Modric and Cristiano Ronaldo handed the visitors a two-goal lead at the interval.

Both sides had chances in the second period, but Madrid held on for a vital three points.

Here, Sports Mole dissects the 90 minutes of action between the two La Liga rivals.

Match statistics

Villarreal
Shots: 13
On target: 5
Possession: 50%
Corners: 7
Fouls: 7

Real Madrid
Shots: 7
On target: 3
Possession: 50%
Corners: 6
Fouls: 10

Was the result fair?

In truth, there was hardly anything between the two teams in terms of general play. If anything, Villarreal were the better side, especially in the second 45 minutes. However, Los Blancos were clinical in front of goal and ultimately secured all the points with two goals in the first period.

As expected, Villarreal had possession of the ball for long spells on their own patch, but struggled to create clear chances against a Real Madrid defence that continues to show signs of serious improvement. Both managers can be pleased with what they saw, but the away side's greater quality in the final third eventually made the difference during what was an entertaining affair.

Villarreal's performance

It was a performance that many would have predicted from Villarreal. They were full of energy and dominated possession for long spells, but they did find it difficult to create clear openings. The introduction of Giovani dos Santos in the second period certainly made the Yellow Submarine more of a threat, while Ikechukwu Uche and Luciano Vietto both had chances throughout the 90 minutes.

On another day, they would have secured at least a point from this type of performance, but they were caught by two Madrid goals of the highest order. It has been a strong start to the season, but they have now been beaten by both Barcelona and Real Madrid on their own patch. In truth, the likes of Bruno and Cani struggled to influence the match for long spells this afternoon as the lack of a final pass cost them.

Real Madrid's performance

It was all doom and gloom at the Bernabeu after Real Madrid lost to Atletico Madrid, with that defeat leaving them with just three points from three games. They have since won all three of their league games, however, and this was perhaps their most impressive performance.

It is always difficult at El Madrigal and Los Blancos entered the match having not won in this stadium on their last two visits. They had to spend long periods of the match without the ball, but ultimately it was their quality that shone through.

Modric's opener was of the very highest order, while Ronaldo's strike was also a demonstration of Real Madrid's incredible threat on the counter attack. Overall, however, head coach Carlo Ancelotti will be more pleased with his side's defensive performance, with Dani Carvajal, Raphael Varane, Marcelo and Sergio Ramos all impressing for the visitors.

Sports Mole's man of the match

Raphael Varane: Real Madrid have not exactly been water-tight in defensive areas this season, while Varane has had to spend some time on the sidelines. The Frenchman has kept his place in the XI in recent weeks, however, and made his point with another strong performance this afternoon. The youngster was aerially dominant, but it was his ability in possession of the ball that impressed the most. He just never looked flustered.

Biggest gaffe

Villarreal's summer signing Vietto had a wonderful chance to send his side ahead in the first period after breaking into the Real Madrid box, but he curled his effort high and wide of the crossbar with just Iker Casillas to beat. It was brilliant work from the forward, but his finish was wayward. A goal at that stage might have made it a different match.

Referee performance

Spanish official Alberto Undiano had a fairly confident afternoon at El Madrigal. The referee issued just the one yellow card throughout the 90 minutes, with Ramos in the book in the first period. Real Madrid had a couple of penalty shouts, but Undiano was not interested despite strong claims. In truth, the Spaniard was not seen for long spells, which is always a good sign for a referee.

What next?

Villarreal: The Yellow Submarine continue their Europa League campaign at home to Apollon on Thursday, before travelling to Celta Vigo in the league next Sunday.

Real Madrid: Los Blancos return to Champions League action away to Ludogorets on Wednesday, before continuing their La Liga campaign at home to Athletic Bilbao next weekend.

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Real Madrid's Croatian midfielder Luka Modric celebrates after scoring during the Spanish league football match Villarreal CF vs Real Madrid CF at El Madrigal stadium in Villareal on September 27, 2014
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Saturday's key events


ROWING
· Two-time Olympic gold medallist and comeback queen Helen Glover teams up with Polly Swan in the heats of the women's pair (12.30am-4.30am)

ARTISTIC GYMNASTICS
· Two-time Rio gold medallist Max Whitlock leads Team GB's charge in the men's qualification, while Rhys McClenaghan flies the flag for Ireland (2am-2pm)

SHOOTING
· The first gold medal of the Games will be awarded in the Air Rifle women's final (from 2.45am)

CYCLING
· The men's road race should be a wide-open thriller, with Team GB among those going for gold (3am-10am)

TENNIS
· Andy Murray, Novak Djokovic and Naomi Osaka are among the names in action on the opening day of tennis (from 3am)

SWIMMING
· Adam Peaty and many others get their Olympics campaigns underway on the opening day of swimming (11am-12.50pm)

FOOTBALL
· Team GB's women try to make it two wins from two against hosts Japan (11.30am)
· Netherlands and Brazil, who scored 15 goals between them on matchday one, face off (12pm)
· World champions USA look to bounce back from a shock opening defeat against New Zealand (12.30pm)

> Today's schedule in full
Todays Game Header Right
Olympic Games Women's Football
Taca da Liga
Scottish League Cup
Pre-Season Friendlies
Belgian Pro League
Swiss Super League
Russian Premier League
Ukrainian Premier League
Swedish Allsvenskan
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Finnish Veikkausliiga
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Brasileiro
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Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Athletic Bilbao00000000
2Atletico MadridAtletico00000000
3Barcelona00000000
4CadizCadiz00000000
5Celta Vigo00000000
6AlavesAlaves00000000
7ElcheElche00000000
8Espanyol00000000
9Getafe00000000
10Granada00000000
11Levante00000000
12Mallorca00000000
13Osasuna00000000
14Rayo Vallecano00000000
15Real Betis00000000
16Real Madrid00000000
17Real Sociedad00000000
18Sevilla00000000
19Valencia00000000
20Villarreal00000000

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