Osasuna 0-2 Real Madrid: 6 Things We Learned
Real Madrid took a 2-0 advantage to Osasuna in the Copa Del Rey second leg, knowing that an away goal would practically put them into the quarterfinals.
Osasuna had provided little threat at the Bernabeu, but here they were left with little option other than to attack. As they had to show more adventure, it inevitably led to space being open at the back.
In this article, we will take a look at six things we learned from this clash.
Ronaldo Is Carlo Ancelotti's Second-Choice Striker
With Karim Benzema rested, Carlo Ancelotti opted to play Cristiano Ronaldo as the lone striker.
The new Ballon d'Or winner doesn't play the position in a conventional manner, drifting away from defenders to wide positions and into gaps, but he still provids a threat to the centre-backs when on the attack.
He has the ability to combine the style of a "false nine" with that of a focal point forward.
Jese played on the right and Isco on the left in the first half, while the young Spaniard moved to a central position in the second period.
Andres Fernandez Will Be Appearing on a Blunders DVD
Osasuna's No. 1 wasn't due to appear in this game; their Copa Del Rey goalkeeper is normally Asier Riesgo.
However. Andres Fernandez's red card at the weekend against Real Betis meant that Riesgo would be required for league duties.
Fernandez's week got worse when Ronaldo lined up a free-kick. Instead of catching the ball, Fernandez opted to punch it, even though it was heading toward his chest.
His double-fisted effort rebounded toward the floor onto his ankles before going through his legs and into the goal.
If it had been anyone else facing him with the set-piece, it's debatable he would have even chose that option.
There Isn't a Natural Role for Isco in the 4-3-3
The last time Madrid traveled to Pamplona, Isco was a revelation. Playing in the No. 10 area, he scored one and created another in a man-of-the-match performance.
This time, he struggled whether he was out on the left in the first half or played as a striker in the second.
His talents are best suited to supplying killer passes rather than trying to get on the end of them.
A run of games in his preferred placing will see him return to the form that saw him net five goals in the opening six games of the season.
Raoul Loe Is Ready for the Premiership
Osasuna didn't have the most productive of games when it came to threatening Iker Casillas' goal, but Loe equipped himself well in the centre of the park.
The French holding midfielder has strength, quick feet and power, which were all evident against a higher class of opposition.
He was quick in possession, shifting the ball out wide promptly to his wingers.
Osasuna are happy to let him go and have appointed an agent to sell him to suitors in England, via Sky Sports.
Fabio Coentrao Would Probably Hamper United Rather Than Help Them
This was his first appearance since the 2 November, and it showed. His first yellow card was for a pointless wag of the finger at the referee, whilst his second was cynical after mistiming the initial challenge.
He was off the pace and poorly positioned throughout the match, and his frustration simply boiled over.
David Moyes could do without adding to his problems.
Alvaro Morata's Lack of Game Time Causes Him to Take Unnecessary Health Risks
After featuring in only nine minutes in the last two months, you have to feel for Alvaro Morata.
Arriving off the bench with 22 minutes to show his worth as a lone striker, he accidentally collided with Francisco Punal's fist.
His eye immediately swelled, and as the game progressed it became more difficult for him to see clearly.
The forward was playing down the extent of the injury as he wanted to take his opportunity, but with minutes remaining, Madrid dropped down to 10 men, after using all their substitutions.
Morata left the pitch in tears.