Aitor Karanka felt a ‘perfect’ Karim Benzema was the difference in Real Madrid’s win, but Marcelo Bielsa felt Athletic Bilbao were far from perfect.
Madrid ran out comfortable winners over the Basques, with Benzema netting a deflected first effort to open the scoring and then a curled left-footed shot to make it 3-0 in a strong first half from the team.
“Benzema gives us the passes and the movement up front. And with his second goal, he was perfect. He links up well, moves into space and offers support. Today he was focused and finished his chances,” commented assistant Coach Karanka at the end.
“The team has maintained the intensity until the end, because Athletic got it to 3-1 and then could have had it at 3-2.
“We talked about it, that if there were an exchange of chances between the teams then the game could be dangerous.
“But, in the second half we were better defensively. And then came more goals. This League does not allow for stumbles, so we must continue.”
However, whilst Madrid were discussing Athletic’s possible comeback, Bielsa revealed that it was not a consideration that came across his mind.
“We are experiencing difficulties. We offered effort and a certain amount of order, but every ball that we lost was in an area where it proved in consequence to be a danger to our goal,” lamented the Argentine after the game.
“We tried to play but that is the game’s summary. Each loss caused dangerous situations in front of our goal.”
The Coach was asked if the team could have had a penalty for a possible penalty by Fabio Coentrao.
“The game’s situation was not dependent on one play. After the first goal there was no way we would draw level in the match.
“We provided effort and sportsmanship. We ran and respected the positional order, but could not counter what they were doing. And we did not impose ourselves in attack.”