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Santiago Solari Records First Win As Real Madrid Interim Coach

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Santiago Solari, who was placed temporarily in charge of Real Madrid lead a youthful side to a comfortable 4-0 first-leg win over Melilla on Wednesday in his first match as interim head coach.

With goals from Karim Benzema, Marco Asensio, Alvaro Odriozola and Cristo Gonzalez, the European champions are on course for the round of 16 of the Copa del Rey.

Two of the more established first-team players were key in securing Madrid’s second win in eight matches in all competitions restoring a sense of calm to a club thrown into turmoil in the aftermath of Sunday’s 5-1 El Clasico thumping at the Camp Nou.

Madrid lined up in an attacking manner featuring Benzema, Lucas Vazquez, Asensio and Vinicius and were contained reasonably well by Melilla in the opening stages. Vazquez got a chance with a significant long-range shot that creased. Benzema opened the scoring 28 minutes in, tapping home after Odriozola sent in a low cross from the right.

The heavy rain and difficult surface made a passing approach difficult, but Vazquez was denied by a smart stop from Daniel Barrio after one fine move involving Vinicius and Asensio. He created two further chances before Madrid finally got their second goal at the end of the first-half, Asensio sweeping the ball into the bottom-right corner after being set up by Vinicius.

The impressive Brazilian hit the bar with a deflected effort after the break, but it was Odriozola who made it 3-0 in the 78th minute when he smashed home just on the line after Vinicius had been denied.

Cristo came on and added a finishing gloss to the scoreline with the last touch of the match, heading home after Odriozola worked space in the box following a corner.

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