Madrid: Jose Mourinho was able to enjoy his 100th win as Real Madrid coach with his side beating Real Zaragoza 4-0 in the Primera Liga football at the Santiago Bernabeu Stadium here.
Everything seemed to be going according to plan Saturday night as a Real Madrid side with Luka Modric and Michael Essien raced into a 2-0 lead after just 24 minutes thanks to goals from Gonzalo Higuain, who was again preferred to Karim Benzema and Angel De Maria, reports Xinhua.
Higuain was the fastest to react after Zaragoza keeper Roberto Jimenez saved a Raul Albiol header from a corner. He scored from close range after 22 minutes.
Two minutes later, Angel de Maria doubled Madrid`s lead after his attempted cross was closed down and he was able to rattle home the rebound.
Real Madrid have a vital Champions League tie at home to Borussia Dortmund in midweek and looked to take their foot off the gas while still looking in control for the rest of the first half.
It would have been almost normal had Zaragoza accepted their fate, but the visitors showed just how much they have changed under the leadership of Manolo Jimenez in the recent months and made a valiant attempt to get back into things after the break.
The visitors upped their physical effort and it would be no exaggeration to say that goalkeeper Iker Casillas was Madrid`s best player with saves from Victor Rodriguez and Paco Montanes, who was enjoying himself down the Zaragoza left.
Jose Mari then rattled the Madrid crossbar with a shot from outside of the area before referee Estrada Fernandez did Madrid a big favour when he ruled out a Helder Postiga goal for offside.
Replays showed that the Portuguese striker was onside before taking a through ball and beating Casillas, but the goal never stood and that allowed Michael Essien to score his first goal for Madrid in the closing minutes before Luka Modric added yet more makeup to the score in injury time.
The score in no way reflects what happened on the pitch, but when Spaniards look at their morning papers, 4-0 is what they will see and it is the score that will count.