Cristiano Ronaldo’s own goal has handed the victory to Granada this Saturday night, in a game where Real Madrid’s motivation levels were noticeably far from what was required. Granada took the 3 points from this 1-0 win and José Mourinho’s men now risk falling again 18 points behind Barcelona, in the top of the Spanish League standings.
Granada got their goal still during the first half, in the 24th minute of the game. The former Benfica and Barcelona player, Nolito, took a corner kick on the left and saw Cristiano Ronaldo deflecting it back, into his own net. Diego López wasn’t counting with it and couldn’t react to the header that gave Granada the precious lead. This was Cristiano Ronaldo’s first own goal in his professional career, but truth has to be said that it was the result of a tottally misfortunate action, that can happen to anyone who defends set pieces inside the penalty box. The goal naturally boosted Granada‘s motivation levels, but didn’t seem to have had any positive effect in terms of mindset and attitude in this game.
Real Madrid passing game has been extremely sloppy and the team has never looked close to be fit. The Merengues weak offensive game has only allowed them to earn a couple of good chances to get the equaliser, but even in those situations the players never appeared to be sharp enough to seize them. The best opportunity came up already inside the last 5 minutes of the game, with Callejón hitting Granada’s goalkeeper body in a 1-on-1 situation and Karim Benzema failing to hit the target on the rebound, with an empty net in front of him… In days like these, it didn’t seem to matter much who Mourinho played on the pitch, as no one was even close to be at its best.
Mesut Ozil wasn’t called up for this game, which can be explained with several reports that the German midfielder has been receiving treatment and recovering from an injury, after that mid-week “Clasico” against Barça. Similar reports were published about Cristiano Ronaldo, however, the Portuguese star has probably forced his appearance tonight, despite his physical limitations… Nothing that surprises us at all, given the competitive mentality and high professionalism level that shapes Ronaldo‘s personality.