The Madrid gunners calibrate their aim for the assault on Paris
Benzema and Vinicius have already scored 65 goals this season, seven more than Liverpool's attacking trident made up of Salah, Mané and Luis Díaz
With just over two weeks to go before the Champions League final between Real Madrid and Liverpool in Paris, Madrid seems to face the final stretch of the League as a springboard to continue gaining sensations on the pitch without overloading their heavyweights with minutes but neither get carried away and lose competitive tension along the way.
The first opponent to pay for the broken dishes of Carlo Ancelotti's plan to arrive in optimal conditions to the battle for the fourteenth European crown in the history of the Chamartín club was Levante. He also did it with the always dramatic demotion, unable to contain a version of Madrid much more recognizable than that of the Madrid derby at the Metropolitano, days before.
The two offensive pillars of the white team, Karim Benzema and Vinicius, returned, and with them also returned the immense offensive power of a team that made a set against Levante but was able to score a few more goals. Even with the feeling of competing at half throttle in the second half, already with their rival on the canvas and going through a real ordeal ending in Second, Madrid scared and their gala offensive trident brought out the frightening statistics, even at Jürgen Klopp's mighty Liverpool.
Benzema scored his 44th goal of the season, his twenty-seventh in the league, and reached Raúl's 323, a legend in Whites' history who until now was the second-highest Real Madrid scorer of all time, only behind Cristiano's 450 Ronaldo, practically unattainable even at the current level of the Lyon striker, a legend in Chamartín.
The Frenchman's goal, through Vinicius's cross, preceded the scoring explosion of the Brazilian, who signed his first hat-trick with a Madrid shirt to raise his goalscoring account to 17 goals in the League, a record only surpassed by Benzema himself and Iago Aspas, with 18, and who rise to 21 with three more in the Champions League and another in the Spanish Super Cup.
The carioca already boasts of his own records as a differential player, his new role in this Madrid that has had the necessary patience until its final explosion. In his fourth season with white, that long-awaited leap in quality has arrived, which was intuited as a result of the qualities for which a transfer of 40 million euros was invested in which he was still a promising teenager. In the 2018-19 campaign, the first in Madrid, he added three goals with the first team plus another four with Castilla, in 2019-20 he rose to five, last time he reached six and this year he has shot up by above twenty.
The numbers say it all, that languid Madrid of the early post-Christian times is now once again the orchard of the times of wine and roses. The 65 goals scored by the unlimited partnership made up of Benzema and Vinicius exceed the 58 of Liverpool's offensive trident, which is no small thing. Between Mohamed Salah (30), Sadio Mané (22) and Luis Díaz (6) they are far from the duo formed by the French and the Brazilian, although it must also be taken into account that the Colombian arrived at Anfield in the winter market , coming from Porto.
As if that were not enough, Ancelotti also has several alternatives as the third point of the attacking trident if he decides to bet on his usual 4-3-3. Rodrygo is the most toned player at the moment, with five goals in the last four games, including the doubles with which he sealed the league win against Espanyol and rescued Madrid against Guardiola's Manchester City. He also added against Levante to raise his figure for the course to nine goals, the same ones he added in his first two seasons at Chamartín. Marco Asensio accumulates twelve, also his best figure for white, despite having fewer opportunities in recent weeks.
Despite everything, Ancelotti suspects that he will choose Valverde again, as he has done in all the big games of the season. The Uruguayan, who demonstrated against Levante his ability to arrive and shoot from a distance with up to three shots at the post, starts theoretically as that third point of the offensive trident, but only on paper, since his physical capacity offers Madrid legs in a most populous core. «The 4-3-3. That sometimes it can turn into a 4-4-2 », answered Carletto when asked about the drawing he manages for the final in Paris.