Ronaldo ends goal drought with big winner as off-key Madrid edge Getafe
Real Madrid carved out a far-from-convincing 2-1 win over Getafe in the Coliseum, courtesy of Karim Benzema's first-half strike and Cristiano Ronaldo's late winner.
A defensive lapse had allowed the home side back into the contest when Jorge Molina got the final touch on a low cross that eluded the visiting back four, but Ronaldo saved the day.
A win is a win, and Ronaldo finally got on the score sheet after the longest league drought of his prolific career. Achraf Hakimi put in another performance that vindicated Zinedine Zidane's decision not to replace Danilo, and the return of Benzema to action was marked with an excellent solo goal.
There is no getting around the fact that Real Madrid are not firing at the moment. The team was disjointed, lacking in ideas and corralled by a well-organised Getafe side who had their chances to equalise late on as the visitors grimly clung to their narrow lead.
Manager rating out of 10
6 -- Zidane's introduction of Isco turned the game, but he left it a little late to make his changes and left Luka Modric on the bench throughout when Real could have used the Croatian's guile in midfield.
The Real boss will continue to rotate, particularly after an international break, but at some point he will need to see some continuity to address his side's lack of cohesion.
Player ratings (1-10; 10 = best. Players introduced after 70 minutes get no rating)
GK Kiko Casilla, 7 -- The backup keeper had a quiet afternoon, making two straightforward saves and coming out to combat danger in the air and on the ground. Was no more to blame for the goal than his defence.
DF Achraf Hakimi, 7 -- Another encouraging performance from the teenager, who doesn't look out of place in this side at all. Eager to get forward and solid at the back, he was rarely beaten and offered an option out wide when Real were hemmed in the middle.
DF Nacho, 6 -- Read a cross well to cut out the ball with Molina in a dangerous position and was generally where he needed to be at the back, but other than one storming run in the first half, he contributed little to Real's forward momentum.
DF Sergio Ramos, 8 -- A captain's performance on an afternoon when Real needed a few kicks in the backside. Absolutely colossal in the air, nothing got past Ramos via that route. He was also a thorn in the side of Geta's defence at set pieces at the other end and prevented Molina from getting clean through at 1-1 with an excellent challenge.
DF Marcelo, 5 -- An off-day for the Brazilian, whose decision to try and take on two Getafe players on the edge of his area almost led to a goal. Out of position and unable to prevent the equaliser at source, he was also wild in his shooting at the other end. It was little surprise when he was hooked by Zidane.
MF Toni Kroos, 8 -- Made more tackles than any of his teammates and was outstanding in his distribution from midfield, if a little less so from the corner flag. Always seeking the ball, he almost always found a white shirt with it and kept Real ticking over when others lost their heads.
MF Marcos Llorente, 7 -- A quietly efficient game from the canterano, who had the highest pass success rate of any starter on either side and didn't put a foot wrong in his first 90 Liga minutes for the club. Stuck in four tackles too.
MF Marco Asensio, 6 -- Not one for the highlights reel. Asensio was isolated for good chunks of the game and shackled effectively by Getafe's defensive system when he did get on the ball.
MF Lucas Vazquez, 7 -- Starting the game brightly but fading in the second half, Vazquez was the object of a good percentage of Getafe's 23 fouls. Raced back to deny Francisco Portillo a shooting chance, covered every inch of the pitch in an attempt to unplug Real's attack and put in a shift in defence.
FW Karim Benzema, 8 -- Stunning solo effort oozed class, from his deft touch to take the ball over an outstretched Getafe leg to a crisp finish. His understanding with Ronaldo opened up some opportunities early on before Real lost their way.
FW Cristiano Ronaldo, 7 -- The man for the moment, even if that moment was a long time in coming. After a glaring miss from a yard out, Ronaldo read Isco's ball and hammered his shot past Vicente Guaita. He could have been on the score sheet earlier after a lovely interchange with Benzema, but the keeper made an excellent stop. Far from his best, but at least off the mark in the league.
MF Isco, N/R -- A glorious ball over the top for Ronaldo proved the key to unlocking Getafe's safe, and he won't be on the bench against Tottenham at the Bernabeu on Tuesday.
DF Theo Hernandez, N/R -- The full-back added some impetus on the left but also showed his rash side to go in the book late on.
FW Borja Mayoral, N/R -- Had 10 minutes to make an impact but only had a couple of touches.
Rob Train covers Real Madrid and the Spanish national team for ESPN FC. Twitter: @Cafc13Rob.