With five minutes left to play in the Bernabeu last night, Real Madrid, Jose Mourinho and Christiano Ronaldo were all in a precarious position. The crisis in the club was going to deepen and Mourinho and Ronaldo were set to endure criticism from fans and media alike.
Into the breach stepped Karim Benzema who had replaced the off target Gonzalo Higuain after 72 minutes. The French striker scored a superb goal after receiving the ball on the edge of the box and turning on a sixpence. Higuain’s shooting has been woeful in the last few games but Mourinho had started him again.
The Portuguese manager also preferred the physicality of Michael Essien to the craft of Mesut Ozil. Madrid did dominate the first half but could not beat the City keeper Joe Hart and could not unlock the City defence. Ozil did come on for Essien and Modric replaced Khedira but City took the lead through Edin Dzeko.
Marcelo had a great game at left back and it was the Brazilian who equalised with a right footed curler. After Benzema’s late equalizer, Ronaldo had a speculative effort that somehow ended up in the net but the number seven should get the credit for keeping going all night.
The dramatic manner of the victory should be the spur the team needs to get the season back on track. Mourinho told the press that he has got his team back, now they can chase down Barcelona.