Real Madrid vs. Real Betis: Vinicius and Rodrygo help defending champions remain unbeaten in La Liga

 Real Madrid vs. Real Betis: Vinicius and Rodrygo help defending champions remain unbeaten in La Liga

Real Madrid vs. Real Betis: Vinicius and Rodrygo help defending champions remain unbeaten in La Liga

Real Madrid gained control of the math and had multiple looks as the game progressed. A Rodrygo cross hit the corner of the goal, and an Aurelien Tchouameni header was cleared off the line by Rui Silva.

The loss ended Betis' five-game unbeaten streak at the Bernabeu, and they were not helped by an early injury to Nabil Fekir, who appeared to be hurt on a play for which he was hoping for a penalty. Despite the fightback for a 1-1 tie, they appeared increasingly outmatched as the game progressed.

MORE: Real Madrid's 2022/23 season schedule and results

Carlo Ancelotti demonstrates his magical touch

Man management is one of the Italian coach's strengths, and it has helped Real Madrid get the most out of its squad. He rotated some key players for this game, giving young Rodrygo a confident start and giving the two fullback spots to newcomers.

In the meantime, Ancelotti was able to give Toni Kroos, Antonio Rudiger, and Fede Valverde a rest — they all came on as second-half substitutes — and his introduction of the Uruguayan Valverde delivered within a couple of minutes. With a run into the attack that eventually broke down the Betis back line that had resisted until that point, he helped create the decisive second goal.

Camavinga struggles, while Tchouameni excels.

Aurelien Tchouameni was masterful in the Casemiro deep midfielder role once again, covering ground, making key interventions, and starting plays. His positioning and game sense were evident, and he even had a header in the box that could've resulted in a goal but for a spectacular save.

Meanwhile, Eduardo Camavinga, his central midfield partner, struggled to make an impact on the game. Camavinga's replacement in the second half, Fede Valverde, and veteran midfielder Luka Modric, both highlighted what he lacked: a desire to get forward and combine.

To be fair, the front three of Vinicius-Benzema-Rodrygo frequently operated as a separate unit from the rest of the team during the game, but Camavinga needs to want to join them in the attack rather than simply watching them do their thing. As Real Madrid took control of the game, a few runs out of midfield could have aided in the completion of an attack or two.

Real Betis to compete in the Champions League? They have tasks to complete.

There is a clear difference in attacking quality between these two squads, which will continue to hurt Betis in future head-to-head matches against the top sides they need to beat to finish in the top four.

That creative force did not help Real Betis. Nabil Fekir was injured in the first quarter of an hour and had to leave the game, but the rest of the cast was ineffective. Sergio Canales scored and had one breakaway run, but he was inconsistent, and Juanmi was easily stopped. Borja Iglesias was left to fight alone when he could have used more assistance.

Forget about the attack. Manuel Pellegrini's team would have benefited from his attackers winning a foul or two and giving his team a break from the multiple waves of Madrid attacks. For a squad with a limited budget, such as Real Betis, game management is critical to gaining an advantage and securing a result or two against the big boys.

The visitors started the game well, but after a penalty appeal was denied, they conceded the opener to Real Madrid's Vinicius Jr. The Brazilian star beat the offside trap to run onto a ball over the top, and his control and lofted shot over the keeper were flawless, earning applause from a raucous Santiago Bernabeu crowd eager to see its team after more than 100 days away.

Sergio Canales, a former Real Madrid player, equalized later in the first half on a play that began with a throw-in. Canales received the ball in the box from teammate Borja Iglesias, and he unleashed a first-time shot that beat Real Madrid goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois.

After four games of the new season, Real Madrid is the only undefeated team in Spain's La Liga. The defending Spanish and European champions remain unbeaten after a 2-1 victory over a spirited Real Betis side on Saturday.

Betis' perfect record was ruined by the defeat, which was decided by a Rodrygo goal in the 65th minute after the teams had traded goals in the first half. Fede Valverde, a second-half substitute, assisted on the goal just one minute after entering the game, setting up his Brazilian teammate for the winner.

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