SOCCER

Player Ratings: Real Madrid 0 – 1 Barcelona; Las Vegas 2022 pre-season Clasico

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Barcelona beat Real Madrid 1-0 in front of a packed Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas, Nevada. Carlo Ancelotti took advantage of the first game of the pre-season to experiment with his line-up. Eden Hazard started as a false nine, Toni Rudiger played at left-back and the young trio of Tchouameni-Valverde-Camavinga started in midfield. In the end, an error from Eder Militao and a resulting goal from Raphinha would be the only goal of the game. There are two matches left before the European Super Cup: Club America and Juventus.

Full player ratings from the match below:

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Thibaut Courtois—9: Hasn’t missed a beat since the end of the previous season. Came in with huge saves on Ansu Fati and Dembele.

Lucas Vazquez—7: Recovered well a few times to catch Ansu Fati and get a much-needed boost to end Barcelona’s attack. Improved offensively in the second half with the introduction of Modric and Asensio on the right side.

Eder Militao—4: Still struggling under pressure and played a square ball into the goal which was punished by Raphinha, scoring Barcelona’s only goal.

David Alaba—6: Very aggressive with his outings and his bets against Robert Lewandowski. Most of them were right except for a moment in the first half when Lewadowski managed to anticipate the tackle and dodged Alaba. Militao was able to sweep.

Antonio Rudiger—6: Played in an unusual left-back role, but did pretty well. Had a good battle with Raphinha and made a successful foray forward.

Chuameni—5: Tried to be an option for teammates but saw little of the ball.

Fede Valverde—6: Nailed the post with a long range shot. Composed when on the ball, but needed to get more involved.

Eduardo Camavinga—8: Apart from a Cruyff in his own box which led to an Ansu Fati chance, Camavinga was Real Madrid’s best performer in the first half. Showed his drive, good first touch and darted through the balls towards Vinicius.

Rodrygo—7: Another positive in the first half. Looks more and more comfortable on the right wing.

Vinicius JR—7: Araujo defended well against Vinicius Junior for most of the game. The Brazilian had a Maradona-like run, going through three to four Barcelona defenders, before being hacked by Jordi Alba.

Eden Hazard—3: Another disappointing performance from Belgium, this time in a false nine. No shots, no runs behind the Barcelona defence, no ties and no sign of returning to his old acceleration that made him such a threat at Chelsea.

Replacements:

Casemiro—5: Caught in possession a few times, leading to a Barcelona transition attack.

Toni Kroos—6: Helped Madrid maintain better pace in the second half – consistently found the overlapping cross-back field change of either Lucas Vazquez or Alvaro Odriozola.

Luka Modric—6: Reinforced the right wing and provided outlets for the defense when building from the back under pressure.

Ferland Mendy—7: A good battle with Ousmane Dembele, Mendy often being more muscular than his compatriot.

Nacho—7: Inserted at center back for David Alaba and dealt with the threat from Aubameyang.

Marco Asensio—7: Played well from the right wing, moving the ball up the pitch with his ability to carry the ball. However, he missed a great chance from inside the box to equalize at home after a good one-two between him and Lucas Vazquez.

Jesus Vallejo—6: Played the last 20 minutes, putting a remarkable tackle on Aubameyang.

Alvaro Odriozola—6: Acted as a right-winger rather than a right-back (much like in the Fiorentina days), but too often played the ball upside-down rather than facing an inexperienced Barcelona left-back.

Dani Ceballos—8: Electric, dynamic and confident after his arrival. Combine with teammates and provide smooth movement on the pitch. Deserves more than the last 20 minutes.

Mariano—5: Connected to the center forward of Rodrygo who played this role in the second half.

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