Real Madrid Versla Fenerbahce 5-3, eindig op de 3e plaats bij Audi Cup 2019

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MUNICH, GERMANY - JULY 31: Karim Benzema of Real Madrid celebrates scoring a goal during the Audi cup 2019 3rd place match between Real Madrid and Fenerbahce at Allianz Arena on July 31, 2019 in Munich, Germany. (Photo by Norbert Barczyk/PressFocus/MB Media/Getty Images)

PressFocus/MB Media/Getty Images

Karim Benzema liftedReal Madridto their first normal-time win of pre-season on Wednesday, scoring a hat-trick as they defeatedFenerbahce5-3 to finish third at the 2019 Audi Cup.  

Garry Rodrigues, Nabil Dirar and Ozan Tufan found goals to make things tricky for Los Blancos, but Benzema was well-placed to almost single-handedly turn the result in their favour.

He netted twice before the break and once in the second period to increase his pre-season goal tally to four.

Nacho Fernandez and substitute Mariano Diaz each scored to compound another disappointing defeat for Fenerbahce, who have now conceded 11 goals in their last two games.

Fenerbahce lost 6-1 against Bayern in their Audi Cup opener, but Real manager Zinedine Zidane was taking few chances and fielded a strong lineup missing only a handful of regular starters.

Luka Modric, Sergio Ramos and Dani Carvajal started on the bench, and Real looked to be missing the latter two at the back after they conceded just six minutes in.

Alvaro Odriozola has earned some calls to become Real’s starting right-back, but he didn’t aid his case when Rodrigues got the better of him down the flank before beating Keylor Navas at his far post.

The lead lasted only six minutes, though, as Vinicius Junior showed quick feet down the left before crossing in to Benzema. He steadied the ball inside the box before poking home the equaliser for his second goal in pre-season.

It didn’t take long for the Frenchman to double his match tally, heading in from a pinpoint Toni Kroos free-kick after 27 minutes to see Real lead a game for the first time this pre-season.

The Spanish Football Podcast noted a change in the direction of the wind while highlighting this was a fixture Real should be dominating with much greater confidence:

The Spanish Football Podcast@tsf_podcast

It’s been considerably better from Real Madrid compared to yesterday, but Fenerbahce are not a good team at all.

Continuing their leaky theme in defence, Real conceded a second before the break. Having been at fault for Fener’s first, it was Odriozola’s deflection off Dirar’s shot that lifted the ball up and over Navas.

No matter the deflection, the goal represented a much welcome boost for captain Dirar, who had a nightmarish display in the recent defeat to Bayern and was booed by his own fans, via Soccer AM:

Soccer AM@SoccerAM

Fenerbahce’s Nabil Dirar threatened to walk off the pitch after being booed by his own fans 🥶 Poor guy 😩 https://t.co/kzUYvmUtSP

La Liga writer Dermot Corrigan highlighted poor defence as a running theme in the first half:

Dermot Corrigan@dermotmcorrigan

HT Madrid 2-2 Fenerbahce. Good, bad and ugly first half from Madrid – Benzema could have had hat-trick, Fenerbahce could have scored four.

Lucas Vazquez came on forEden Hazardat the break and set Benzema up to complete his hat-trick after the restart, igniting a flurry of three goals in 15 minutes.

Dirar’s defensive weakness was exploited as Lucas had space to cross in, with Benzema in plenty of room to head past Fener goalkeeper Altay Bayindir.

Ozan Tufan responded after he was also given too much time near the opposition box, hammering into the top-right corner from 35 yards out, via ITV (UK only):

ITV Football@itvfootball

Ozan Tufan scores a stunner to make it Fenerbahce 3-3 Real Madrid! Watch live on @ITV4 now – what a game! #AudiCup2019 https://t.co/4cvZpg6tdT

Zidane’s substitutes continued to take effect, and Diaz helped force Real’s fourth with one of his first touches. He saw his shot from the edge of the box saved by Bayindir, but centre-back Nacho reacted quickest and converted to push Real back in front 4-3.

Diaz looked desperate to score in his cameo and finally got his reward in the 80th minute, following up on a saved Vazquez shot to give Real their fifth and put the result beyond doubt.

Benzema’s performance will encourage his manager after enjoying a productive 2018-19 campaign, while injured Luka Jovic won’t fancy his chances of taking the striker spot with his team-mate in this form.

Real are still seeking their first clean sheet in pre-season, while Zidane will also hope major summer signing Hazard can have a greater impact in giving them a more positive end to their preparations.

What’s Next?

Real Madrid have a week off before they face Red Bull Salzburg next Wednesday in their penultimate pre-season fixture, while Fenerbahce face Cagliari Tuesday in their last friendly of the summer.

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