[/caption]Cristiano Ronaldo made a perfect return to La Liga on Saturday evening as he scored two goals to eventually help Real Madrid defeat Xerez 3-0 at the Chapin Stadium.
These two goals were also Cristiano Ronaldoâ€™s frist goals since turning 25 on February 5th.
Xerez vs Real Madrid â€“ first half:
Right from the start of the first period, the hosts looked dangerous. After only five minutes gone down the clock, Xerezâ€™s Carlos Calvo almost stunned the away crowd but his shot was deflected away.
The pressure created by the home team was so intense that Real Madridâ€™s Sergio Ramos sustained a yellow card in the early stages of the match. Xerezâ€™s Momo also tried to deceive Los Blancosâ€™ defense but he failed to do so by missing the target.
A quarter of an hour ran down the clock before Real Madrid commenced looking alive in attack. Cristiano Ronaldo was set up by Alvaro Arbeloa but his shot could only go straight into the keeper.
The Portuguese winger had another chance to open the scoring sheet moments later when Redondo cheaply gave away the ball.Once again, Cristiano Ronaldo couldnâ€™t be accurate and the ball went wide.
Xabi Alonso and Esteban Granero both came close to breaking the deadlock for Real Madrid. At the other end of the picth, Bermejo also missed a good opportunity for Xerez to take the lead.
At half time, the score line was 0-0 but this didnâ€™t mean that the game was dull.
Xerez vs Real Madrid â€“ second half:
Quickly after the break, the match was temporarily postponed after a spectator in the name of Francisco Holgado ran onto the field of play.
The manâ€™s gestures explained that he was manifesting against injustice after the death of his murdered son. Security officers attempted to pull him out of the place while Xerez players tried to calm things down.
The man later left the field and he was applauded by the whole crowd. Play eventually resumed.
Xerez looked to have done an extremely good job against Real Madrid as they kept their lines clean for up to 60 minutes. However, things suddenly turned around three minutes past the hour mark when Alvaro Arbeloa broke the deadlock.
The defender was sent through on goal by Xabi Alonsoâ€™s intelligent ball. He raced forward and lashed the ball at the back of the net from inside the eighteen yard box. His shot left Xerezâ€™s goalkeeper Renan helpless in his post.
After that, the rest of the show was destined to be Cristiano Ronaldoâ€™s and it took the player only two minutes to impose his authority.
The number 9 forward who had not enjoyed La Liga football for two weeks made his mark on Xerezâ€™s turf and somehow sent a clear message to the public of football: that he is back and on fire.
Firstly, Cristiano Ronaldo opened his account in the game with a flying header. Kakaâ€™s cross came in from the right hand side and few might have thought that the Portuguese will hit that ball to score from such a position.
It was surely quite a way to set up the away crowd with excitement and to stun Xerez.And that was not all. There was still time for Cristiano Ronaldo to combine with Kaka again and create Real Madridâ€™s third and final goal of the evening; and this happened two minutes later.
Ahead of the encounter, Cristiano Ronaldo had talked about the Brazilian midfielder as an important player for Los Blancos who was just starting to prove his value to his critics after recovering from his hernia injury.
In fact, Kaka was instrumental on Saturday night. He was sent clean through on goal by Cristiano Ronaldo and could have slaughtered the ball at the back of the net after rounding the keeper.
However, as Xerezâ€™s stoppers crowded the penalty box in defense and as goalkeeper Renan was making himself big, Kaka preferred to intelligently square the ball back to Cristiano Ronaldo. The ultimate thing for the Portuguese striker was to drive the ball past the goal line, and he made no mistake doing so.
Cristiano Ronaldoâ€™s brilliant performance against Xerez on Saturday inspired Real Madrid to a 3-0 victory that saw them cut the gap at the top of the table to two points. In the match of the weekend, Barcelona lost to Atletico Madrid, meaning that the two-point gap remained the same.
After trampling Xerez 3-0, Cristiano Ronaldo and Real Madridâ€™s mission will be to bring down bottom side Tenerife in their next La Liga fixture this weekend.
Watch the video highlights of this game (Xerez 0-3 Real Madrid) here and keep exploring Football Fan Talk’s Video Gallery!
Angela Asante, Footballfantalk.com