Real Madrid crushed Real Valladolid 6-0 at the Santiago Bernabeu on Sunday afternoon in preparation for their midweek Clasico.
The victory followed their league Clasico defeat just before the March international break, and they showed no signs of a hangover.
Karim Benzema scored a first-half hat-trick in just 36 minutes, but the match was not as easy as the scoreline suggested. Real Valladolid began brightly, and Roque Mesa hit the post before Monchu dragged an effort narrowly wide. However, Madrid showed their attacking threat with a devastating counter-attack after 22 minutes, with Eduardo Camavinga beginning the move and Marco Asensio leading the charge downfield.
Rodrygo then opened the scoring with a calm finish into the bottom corner.
Vinicius Junior soon danced past Luis Perez and delivered a cross into the box that Jawad El Yamiq and goalkeeper Sergio Asenjo both left for each other, allowing Benzema to score with a simple tap-in. The Frenchman then continued to dazzle, scoring two more goals before halftime, including a stunning acrobatic effort.
Carlo Ancelotti made substitutions after 65 minutes as the tempo dwindled, and Marco Asensio added Madrid’s fifth of the afternoon in the final 20 minutes. Eden Hazard also had a rare appearance, contributing to Lucas Vazquez’s close-range finish.
Although the victory did little to boost Madrid’s title aspirations, as they still trail Barcelona by 12 points, it will have given the team confidence ahead of the crucial cup tie at the Camp Nou on Wednesday.
Referee Juan Luis Pulido Santana also ruled out a goal for Rodrygo due to a handball from Vinicius in the buildup, providing some respite for Valladolid.
The game was watched by Valladolid owner Ronaldo Nazario, who had scored numerous goals at the Santiago Bernabeu during his playing career. Despite his presence, his team were unable to put up much of a fight against a dominant Madrid side.