Marco Asensio’s 20-yard finish helped Real Madrid to a low-key 1-0 victory over relegation-threatened Getafe in LaLiga on Saturday.
The Spain international fired home a superb strike with 20 minutes to play at Santiago Bernabeu to keep Los Blancos in the mix for a top-two finish.
With Barcelona poised to claim the league crown imminently, Carlo Ancelotti’s priorities have long since shifted to mounting a successful defence of their Champions League crown.
But he will nevertheless be happy to ensure they maintain some unbeaten momentum after seeing off Jose Bordalas’ struggling visitors.
With a much-rotated side fielded in deference to Wednesday’s impending European crunch clash with Manchester City, Madrid shaded a lacklustre first half between the two.
Asensio missed an opportunity after tapping a soft finish straight to keeper David Soria off Aurelien Tchouameni’s smart delivery, while Dani Ceballos was wildly off-target just beyond the half-hour mark.
3 – Real Madrid touched the ball just three times in Getafe’s box in the first half, their lowest half-time tally in a @LaLigaEN home game since December 2012 (2 v Atlético de Madrid).
— OptaJose (@OptaJose) May 13, 2023
Getafe themselves struggled to press their hosts for an opener of their own, and were mostly limited to a flurry of half-chances for Juan Iglesias that were ably dealt with in the opening quarter-hour.
That overall lack of quality saw Ancelotti introduce a slew of first-team regulars after the break, with Vinicius Junior and Luka Modric both brought on.
But it was Asensio who finally won it after he struck from distance, with a handy deflection helping his effort squirm beneath Soria and in at the right post.
Vinicius saw a late breakaway chalked off for offside, yet Madrid were untroubled across the closing stages, securing three points with little fuss.
What does it mean? Madrid stay on song
Sandwiched between the two games that will likely define whether their season can be called a success or not, Los Blancos were always going to field a weakened side for this game.
The risk of walking away with just a point, and conceding more ground to rivals Atletico Madrid in the race for second, was a real threat, but they got there in the end.
Asensio still the ace
Much of Madrid’s firepower has been offered by their foreign stars since the World Cup, with several continuing to forge a fearsome reputation.
But do not count out Asensio’s contributions either, with him now having registered 14 goal involvements since Qatar 2022, more than any other Spaniard in Europe’s top five leagues.
Getafe miss chance to climb out of bottom three
Victory against Celta Vigo last time out gave the under-fire club a shot in the arm, but they leave Santiago Bernabeu empty-handed after a frustrating game.
They remain in the relegation zone, and will rue that they could only muster two shots on target across the whole fixture.
Key Opta facts
– Real Madrid attempted 847 passes across the game, the highest total by any team in a single LaLiga match this season.
– Eder Militao attempted 119 passes alone, which is the highest total for a Real Madrid player in a top-flight match this term.
– Madrid have kept a clean sheet in 13 of their 34 La Liga games this season, trailing only Real Sociedad (14) and Barcelona (25).
Madrid make the trip to England to face Manchester City in the Champions League on Wednesday, while Getafe will be facing off with Elche next Saturday.
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