Before the match, Carlo Ancelotti warned that Real Madrid could come short against promoted Elche.
And had it not been for the interventions of the referee and Cristiano Ronaldo, he would have been right.
Los Blancos were afforded the luxury of two dubious goals, which allowed them to take three points back to the Bernabeu.
The first came after CR7 fired in a long-range free-kick for a foul which should never have been given.
And the second, after plucky Elche had equalised at the death, came after a debatable penalty by CR7, when the game was about to hit rigor mortis.
It was a close call for Real, who simply cannot afford to drop more points as long as champions Barcelona maintain their 100% record.
For this reason, Ancelotti has issued another warning. It is the Madrid derby at the weekend, against an Atletico side which also proudly boasts a 100% record.
Copa del Rey notwithstanding, Real Madrid usually boss the derby. But Ancelotti says that another performance like the one against Elche means that Atletico will earn bragging rights in the Spanish capital on Sunday.
"I am not happy,” Ancelotti fumed last night.
"We need to play differently. We suffered a lot during the match, particularly during the closing minutes of the match.
"The team controlled the match after Cristiano Ronaldo’s goal in the second half. The result is the most important thing, but it isn’t enough, we need to play better.
"We won’t win the derby if we play like we have done in this match, that’s why I think we need to improve, play with more intensity and personality."
As far as the lucky penalty decision was concerned, Carlo was canny.
"It’s hard to talk about these situations because from the bench our position is not the best. Generally speaking I don’t like to talk about refereeing decisions. I spoke with Pepe and he told me it was a clear penalty," he added.
Meanwhile, if you think Ancelotti was angry, it was left to livid Elche skipper Albucar to summarise his club’s take on Real’s lucky escape.
“Both goals came from fouls which did not exist,” he said.
“The Ronaldo free-kick for me was not a foul either. Robbery.”