Passing the Getafe would never be an easy task for Real Madrid and Zinedine Zidane had been well aware that Getafe concede the least amount of shots per game in La Liga — one better than Real Madrid’s strong defensive blueprint and they are known for their defensive barricades and aggressive style of football – Getafe are also one of the most aggressive high-pressing teams in La Liga.

Pepe Bordala’s men made life tougher for the Royal Whites. Zidane emphasized on compactness as usual, but in the previous matches, fluidity was evident. Getafe hampered the rhythm and forced the backline Los Blancos to pass the ball to the full-backs, while they rotated over to press the flanks as soon as it got there.

Immediately, Dani Carvajal and Mendy came under pressure as the press of Getafe blocked the passing lanes for Casemiro, Luka Modric and Isco. Fast passing of Carvajal took a setback while Mendy’s dribble was halted. Even if they did it, quickly Getfae took over the possession.

Isco, who formed the tip of the diamond-shaped midfield, could not act and it prompted Karim Benzema to drop down more often. Meanwhile, Damian Suarez and Nyom worked well in sync defending Vinicius.

At half-time, there wasn’t much to be encouraged by, and Getafe were successful in implementing a solid defensive structure to unnerve Real Madrid’s ball-carriers. But, Zidane’s men could easily have been up 1-0 if not for a point-blank David Soria save on Vinicius.

In the 64th minute, Zidane made three substitutes at once: Asensio for Vinicius; Fede Valverde for Luka Moric; Rodrygo for Isco.

Valverde injected movement in a rather stagnant midfield, and Rodrygo occupied the right flank with pace to keep Cucurella at bay.

15 minutes later, Rodrygo and Carvajal combined to break Getafe’s press, and earn a penalty which Sergio Ramos converted.

The deadlock was broken and Real knew it was the decider.

Real Madrid’s performance had not been impressive, but, they prevailed in a tight contest and passed the Getafe test.

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