FC Copenhagen vs. Real Madrid: 6 Things We Learned from Champions League Clash
Real Madrid beat Copenhagen 2-0 in their visit to Parken Stadium and stretched their unbeaten streak to six games in this year's UEFA Champions League .
It was a particularly special game for Los Blancos. They grabbed their 800th goal in the history of the tournament, their 20th in the group stage—a record set by Manchester United (1998-9999) and Barcelona (2011-2012)—and set an all-time record in European competitions by scoring in 31 successive games.
Cristiano Ronaldo also became the first player to score nine goals in the group stage of the tournament.
Here are six lessons from this historic match.
Cristiano Ronaldo Is the Most Lethal Finisher
Cristiano Ronaldo set yet another record this evening, as he put away his ninth goal of the tournament, becoming the first player to score that number of times in the group stage in a single edition.
It is true that he missed a penalty kick—his first one in the UEFA Champions League since 2008, when he played with Manchester United—but he still managed to become the top scorer of the competition.
He also bagged his 68th goal of the year in 58 appearances.
Ronaldo proved that he can run through the flanks and get inside the box with ease, creating numerous goal opportunities for his club.
Johan Wiland Was Superb
Things could have been worse for Copenhagen if it hadn't been for Johan Wiland.
The goalkeeper saved his team eight times, one of them from the boots of Cristiano Ronaldo in a penalty kick.
His reflexes were superb, especially in the second half when Real Madrid was attacking constantly and with more precision.
In both Real Madrid goals he didn't have much to do. Luka Modric's shot was excellent and Cristiano Ronaldo left the defenders behind after Pepe assisted him.
Wiland was by far Copenhagen’s key player.
Karim Benzema Was Lost
Benzema was nowhere to be found. He was by far Real Madrid's worse player this evening.
He was out of pace and only had three shots; all of them were on target but also comfortably saved by Wiland.
He was never a factor inside the box, where he usually moves easily, and his most productive play came almost at the end of the game, when Ronaldo was tackled inside the box.
It is true that there was not much at stake in this game, but that's no excuse for the Frenchman's lack of threat.
Luka Modric Is a Game Changer
The Croatian international proved once again that he is capable of changing any game in the blink of an eye.
Modric scored Real Madrid's opener, and he did it in the same way he scored his two previous goals in the UEFA Champions League, from outside the box.
His mobility and fine touch set him as a key player in the midfield, but also as a creative footballer that distributes the ball like few could.
Marcelo Is a Thriving Force
Marcelo keeps delivering brilliant performances no matter which tournament he is playing.
The Brazilian international is a must-watch player week in, week out. His speed and creativity is the perfect combination to provide Los Blancos with depth.
He took advantage of Copenhagen's poor defense and created some serious goal opportunities through the left wing with crosses and precise short passes.
He was the mastermind behind second goal proving how valuable he can be when coming from the flanks.
Real Madrid's Defense Was Shaky
Nacho Fernandez and Alvaro Arbeola need to work harder to keep the defense tight, especially on the left.
Pepe was consistent throughout the match, but Fernandez faltered constantly.
Youssef Toutouh and Igor Vetokele were two of the most active Copenhagen players, and they managed to put the defense in distress a couple of times.
Toutouh had the clearest chance, as he took advantage of the space between Nacho and Pepe, but Casillas deflected his shot.
Despite it all, Sergio Ramos was missed.
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