Viktoria Plzeň 0-5 Real Madrid: Report, Ratings & Reaction as Los Blancos Thrash Viktoria

Real Madrid all but booked their place in the knockout stages of the UEFA Champions League after a comfortable 5-0 victory over Group G opponents Viktoria Plzeň at the Štruncovy Sady Stadion.

Karim Benzema opened the scoring with a fine individual effort that saw him get the better of two defenders and slot home through the legs of the goalkeeper, before Casemiro headed home to double the lead, soon after. 

Benzema then added his second of the night in the 37th minute, following a corner, before Gareth Bale volleyed home Madrid’s fourth, five minutes before the interval.

Substitute Vinícius Júnior then teed up Toni Kroos to make it five after the hour-mark to make it five and complete the rout, in what was Real Madrid manager Santiago Solari’s first UEFA Champions League match in charge of the Merengues.

Check out our breakdown of the game below.


Key Talking Point

The Czech side started in the ascendancy and tried their best to take advantage of the uncertainties in the Madrid defence. However, they weren’t clinical enough in the final third, which allowed their opposition to grow into the game and eventually capitalise with two goals in quick succession, the second of which resulted from poor defending following a corner.


Yet, they still looked dangerous on the break with the long ball forward causing their opponents several problems on a few occasions, but as was the case in the previous encounter, they were wasteful and their Spanish opponents punished them for this. 

There were several lapses in concentration while defending crosses into the area, which proved to be their undoing as Benzema and Bale found the net to make it 4-0 before half-time. 

Skipper Roman Hubník struggled with the movement of the Madrid front-line and wasn’t able to deal with the pace of their attack, which got even worse when substitute Júnior entered the field and then found Kroos, who made it five.

Player Ratings

Starting XIHruška (5); Řezník (5), Hejda (5), Hubník (5), Limberský (5); Procházka (6), Hrošovský (6*); Havel (5), Čermák (5), Kopic (5); Chorý (5). 

SubstitutesHořava (5), Petržela (5); Řezníček (N/A)

STAR MAN – Hrošovský was positive in possession and picked up the ball in some nice pockets of space. He tried to make things happen in the first period for his side, and had Madrid chasing shadows and facing their own goal for much of the first quarter of an hour.


WORST PLAYER – Despite captaining the side Hubník, didn’t seem much of a leader against Madrid. He struggled to get close to his opposite numbers, thus allowing duo Benzema and Bale too much space and time in the area. 

He didn’t command his side’s penalty area, which allowed the Spaniards to score twice from set-pieces. His lack of pace was also easily exploited throughout the match and it got worse when substitute Júnior was introduced. He couldn’t catch the Brazilian and also allowed Kroos to make the overlapping run and find the net.


Key Talking Point 

The defending Champions League holders looked out of sorts defensively with the inexperience of Sergio Reguilón and Álvaro Odriozola evident in the early stages. They could have gone behind within the first ten minutes when Nacho turned a cross against his own woodwork, and could have also gone a man down if referee Deniz Aytekin spotted an apparent elbow on Milan Havel by Sergio Ramos.

However, they managed to weather the storm and score twice in as many minutes and take complete control of the game soon after. In the end, it was a comfortable 5-0 win. 

Player Ratings

Starting XI: Courtois (5); Odriozola (6), Nacho (6), Ramos (5), Reguilón (6); Kroos (7), Casemiro (7), Ceballos (6); Vázquez (6), Benzema (8*), Bale (7).

Substitutes: Sánchez (5); Isco (N/A); Vinícius Júnior (6)

STAR MAN – Benzema seemed to inspire his side when they were under the cosh. He took his opening goal very well, showed great skill and determination to beat two players with a clever feint, before a composed finish through the legs of the keeper.

He also got into some dangerous positions, which was key for his second goal of the night. He read the idea of the short corner and then showed great awareness to get onto the end of Bale’s delivery before heading home. He also played his part in Madrid’s fourth of the night, which saw Bale volley home from the Frenchman’s flick-on. 


WORST PLAYER – Ramos looked nervous in the early stages and found it difficult to contain the threat of their inferior opposition. He clashed with Havel prior to Benzema’s opener and on another day could have seen red for his flailing elbow on the Plzeň player, which could have had an important baring on the outcome of the match.

Looking Ahead

Next up, Madrid travel to 11th-placed Celta de Vigo, hoping to extend their run of victories to four matches.