De Bruyne and Benzema get marks of 8/10 in L'Equipe's player ratings

Kevin De Bruyne, Phil Foden and Karim Benzema all get marks of 8/10 for Man City’s seven-goal thriller with Real Madrid… but both goalkeepers only manage a four and Real boss Carlo Ancelotti is savaged with a THREE in L’Equipe’s ruthless ratings

  • MARTIN SAMUEL’S MATCH REPORT: Man City win SEVEN-goal thriller at Etihad
  • Karim Benzema starred for Real Madrid to ensure they remain in the semi-final
  • Benzema was awarded a mark of 8/10, along with three Manchester City players 
  • Madrid boss Carlo Ancelotti was savaged, however, as he got just a 3/10 grade 
  • READ: ‘Cold-blooded’ Benzema nets outrageous PANENKA penalty against City 

Real Madrid boss Carlo Ancelotti has been savaged in L’Equipe’s notorious ratings after he needed ‘individuals to get him out of trouble’ in a seven-goal thriller away to Manchester City. 

The Premier League hosts raced out of the blocks at the Etihad Stadium and were two goals up inside 11 minutes courtesy of goals from Kevin De Bruyne and Gabriel Jesus.

Pep Guardiola’s side would go on to get two more and were it not for a Karim Benzema brace and a breakaway goal from Vinicius Jnr, Ancelotti may have fared even worse in Wednesday morning’s newspapers. 

Kevin De Bruyne (left) and Karim Benzema (right) both received marks of 8/10 by L’Equipe

The French newspaper ratings were not as glowing for Carlo Ancelotti (left), who received a 3

‘His tactical option to favour the counter-attack by establishing Rodrygo did not work,’ L’Equipe wrote. 

‘Collectively and tactically, Real were overtaken, especially in the midfield, where their players often found themselves inferior and lacking aggressiveness. Fortunately, he has individuals to get him out of trouble.’

Right back Dani Carvajal and centre back David Alaba were the two other players left licking their wounds with the harshest of marks – both joining their manager with a three out of 10.

Alaba had only returned to training in the build up ‘and it showed’ in the eyes of the French newspaper.  

The Austrian defender was hooked at half-time and replaced by Nacho ‘who was overwhelmed by the Mancunian assaults.’ He finished with a meagre four out of 10.

L’Equipe were so impressed by the opening semi-final of the 2021-22 UEFA Champions League that they opted for an English headline – ‘Just Crazy’. 

De Bruyne ran the show for much of the game and was heralded with a mark of eight out of 10 having nodded in the opener and laid on the pass for Jesus to double the lead at 2-0.

‘An amazing first half hour,’ L’Equipe wrote in their rating justification, ‘but he is also the protagonist of two huge opportunities missed.’

Benzema reduced the areas to have them down by just one as he converted cleverly on his left foot from Ferland Mendy’s cross.

David Alaba (left) found life tough after limited training and he too received just a 3/10 grade

Phil Foden (left) was among City’s four goalscorers and was one of three City stars to get 8/10

Vinicius scored two minutes after Phil Foden, who also got a mark of eight, had made it 3-1 to City before Bernardo Silva put the hosts up 4-2.

Benzema has been a revelation once again this season and showed all his quality with a Panenka penalty in the final 10 minutes – his 41st goal of the season – to tee up what looks set to be a classic second-leg back at the Santiago Bernabeu.

The Frenchman led the way with a mark of eight for Real Madrid, due in large part because he ​​’continued to remobilize his team-mates, who did not sink thanks to him.’ 

As thrilling as the game was from an attacking perspective with seven goals and 27 shots between the two teams, both goalkeepers emerged with plenty of cuts and bruises from L’Equipe’s ratings.

Thibaut Courtois and Ederson were handed marks of four, with both seen as culpable for the scoreline being run up as much as it was.  

L’Equipe’s front page even ran an English headline to mark the seven-goal thriller: ‘Just Crazy’

‘He knows a little too much, sometimes,’ was the verdict on Ederson. ‘He didn’t do anything decisive.’

Frustration on the night for City and their supporters came in the fact that they were unable to kill off the tie and put one foot into the final. 

Much of the credit has been laid at Guardiola’s door, even with him having ‘had mixed fortunes with his choices’ on the night.   

Elsewhere, Vinicius, despite his goal, received just a mark of five while Rodrygo, who played on the other side of Benzema, managed a four. 

Benzema was the only player in the Real Madrid XI to get a mark above a five out of 10 on the night. 

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