Real Madrid put their domestic form behind them and began their defence of the Champions Trophy in style, seeing off Swiss outfit Basel 5-1 at the Santiago Bernabeu.
Almost four months on from winning La Decima, Los Blancos showed glimpses of their best attacking football as Gareth Bale, Cristiano Ronaldo and James Rodriguez all scored in seven devastating minutes in the first half to blow Basel out of the water.
The scoring had actually got underway even earlier, on the 15 minute mark, with Marek Suchy putting the ball past his own keeper to give the holders a helping hand to the delight of the home crowd.
The three goals towards the end of the first half ended the game as a contest. First, Luka Modric sent Bale free and the Welshman rounded the keeper to finish off with aplomb. A minute later, the former Tottenham pair combined again and Bale sent in a low cross from Ronaldo to tap in to get his Champions League goalscoring underway for the new campaign.
Shortly after that, Rodriguez had a simple finish after Karim Benzema’s shot had been deflected.
The second half turned more into a training exercise and Carlo Ancelotti’s men took the foot off the pedal. Basel grabbed a goal for the fans to celebrate when Gonzalez show low past Casillas. Ten minutes from time, Benzema scored a superb goal after a beautiful combination with Ronaldo.
Real’s Champions League campaign is up and running. Now it’s time to improve in La Liga.