Real Madrid coach Carlo Ancelotti said he hoped his side's fans could now focus on the positive after Tuesday night's 5-1 Champions League Group B opening day win against Basel at the Estadio Santiago Bernabeu.
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Madrid were 4-0 up inside 40 minutes, thanks to a Marek Suchy own-goal and strikes from Gareth Bale, Cristiano Ronaldo and James Rodriguez. Derlis Gonzalez pulled one back for the visitors before the break, with the second half only notable for a few impressive saves from under-fire goalkeeper Iker Casillas and a superb final goal for the also whistled recently Karim Benzema.
The result came after a difficult few weeks for Ancelotti's side, who had lost back to back La Liga games to Real Sociedad and city neighbours Atletico Madrid, while also dealing with the loss of high-profile midfielders Angel Di Maria and Xabi Alonso. Even Basel coach Paulo Sousa said his players were "expecting something big from Madrid" following two straight defeats.
Ancelotti claimed with eyebrow raised at his post-match news conference that he only ever heard positive noises coming from the crowd, and said he was sure the fans had gone home happy after such a comprehensive victory.
"For me today's game made the fans happy, the team played well, scored many goals, tried to play their best," Ancelotti said. "In the end the Bernabeu was happy. It is normal to be upset after losing a derbi. I am not used to losing two games in a row at Real Madrid. It is good not to accept that. I only hear the fans sometimes, when they sing the 'How could I not love you' song. I prefer to focus on the positive."
Nacho Fernandez, whose strike deflected off Suchy for the opener, also said the support of the fans made a big difference in Real's performance.
"It was an important win, especially after the other day in the League," Fernandez told AS.com.
"We had a good tempo all game and we've gotten what we wanted. I'm very happy, although the goal helped. I want to take every opportunity I get. I have to work every day to earn my place and then the coach decides."
Ancelotti's said Madrid's high-intensity start to the game had paved the way to the win.
"Today the reaction of the team was good," he said. "They started very well, with lots of intensity in first half, pressuring high up the pitch, and lots of movement up front. Of course not everything is resolved, but I liked the reaction of the team. We started well, then we tried to control the game."
Benzema's spectacular 20-yard strike, which came after lightning interplay with Cristiano Ronaldo, would be a boost to a player who had been criticised after scoring just twice in his last 18 Madrid games, the former Milan and Chelsea boss said.
"I do think Benzema needed that, as he always plays the same," Ancelotti said. "Of course it is a good for a forward to score a spectacular goal."
The win set everyone at Madrid up well for their next Group B game at Bulgarian side Ludogorets on Oct. 1, Ancelotti said.
"To win the group it is very important to play well and win your first two games," he said. "We know that Ludogorets played very well tonight, and almost drew at Liverpool. We have a lot of respect for them, but we will go there to win."