December 12, 2020
Real Madrid’s grand week came to a perfect end on Saturday. If these three games in seven days are to define their season as the narrative had declared, far from coming to a premature end it looks set to turn out nice again. Zinedine Zidane was on edge and on an ultimatum, his team threatened with elimination from the Champions League group stage for the first time ever and with being left so far adrift domestically as to be virtually done. But they did what they always seem to do in situations like these and rose again, beating Sevilla, beating Borussia Mönchengladbach and doing what no one had done since February by beating Atlético Madrid too.
Real Madrid ease to derby win over Atlético after Casemiro opener
On Friday afternoon Zidane had declared Atlético favourites to win the league; on Saturday night his team defeated their city rivals 2-0 with a first-half goal from Casemiro and then an own goal by Jan Oblak. Diego Simeone’s team had not lost for 26 matches – going back to the last time they faced Real Madrid – and although they remain top, the title race was opened up at Valdebebas. It is one that includes Real now, too. Not just because of the score, but also because of the script this game followed. As for Zidane, here was more evidence that the only reason to doubt him is that it is precisely that doubt, that danger, which brings the best from his players.
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