A goal towards the end of each half from Gareth Bale and Cristiano Ronaldo earned Real Madrid a 2-0 victory at Eibar this afternoon, but Los Blancos still appeared scarred from their difficult week.
Rafael Benitez’s side were thrashed 4-0 by Barcelona in last Saturday’s El Classico and nearly surrendered a four-goal lead to draw with Shakhtar Donetsk in the Champions League in midweek.
Their start was that of a team short of confidence as Ronaldo squandered a one-on-one situation, while seventh-place Eibar tested Keylor Navas courtesy of strikes from Sergi Enrich and Takashi Inui.
But Madrid scored a timely opener a couple of minutes before the interval. A well-worked short-corner routine eventually saw Luka Modric whip the ball towards the near post for Bale to head home.
Eibar fought hard to restrict Real of clear-cut chances in the second half, and frustration and nerves seemed to be building in the Madrid camp as they were denied a couple of decent penalty shouts.
The visitors were given a spot kick on 82 minutes, although Lucas Vazquez went down under little contact from Dani Garcia. Ronaldo stepped up to make the points safe with his ninth of the season.
Real remain third in the La Liga table, six points behind red-hot leaders Barcelona, who have won all of their last six matches. Eibar are just three points adrift of fifth after a first defeat in four outings.
Mesut Ozil goal video: Sanchez returns favour to supply assist king with sublime pass v Norwich
Wayne Rooney and Anthony Martial problems part of bigger issue for Manchester United (video)
Diego Costa throws bib video: Petulant striker aims at Mourinho after being left on bench v Tottenham