Barcelona, July 11
Karim Benzema helped Real Madrid transfer one step nearer to dethroning Lionel Messi’s Barcelona.
Benzema scored one purpose and arrange one other to steer Madrid to beating Alavés 2-Zero on Friday and restoring a four-point lead over Barcelona within the Spanish league with solely three rounds left.
Benzema scored a penalty kick within the 11th minute and assisted Marco Asensio within the 50th to make sure an eighth straight victory since La Liga resumed play after stopping for 3 months because of the pandemic.
Benzema has 4 targets in the course of the successful streak and offered an excellent help for Casemiro to attain in a 1-Zero win at Espanyol three rounds in the past.
Madrid will end the season with matches in opposition to Granada, Villarreal, and Leganés.
Barcelona has video games in opposition to Valladolid, Osasuna, and Alavés earlier than the competitors concludes on July 19.
Madrid holds the tiebreaker on head-to-head targets in the event that they end stage on factors.
Still, Madrid coach Zinedine Zidane refused to say the league was Madrid’s to lose.
“Anything can happen until this is over,” Zidane mentioned. “It is a good result and how we have three to go.”
Zidane needed to experiment in defence with Sergio Ramos and Dani Carvajal serving suspensions and Marcelo and Nacho Fernández injured.
While the left aspect was held down by the skilled Raphael Varane and typically starter Ferland Mendy, the correct aspect went to Éder Militão in simply his ninth league begin of the marketing campaign and Lucas Vázquez, a ahead.
The new-look defence saved a fifth clear sheet in a row for Madrid.
Vázquez’s inexperience in defence confirmed three minutes into the match when Edgar Méndez dribbled previous him and despatched a cross to the second submit, the place Joselu Sanmartín headed the ball off the bar. Casemiro then needed to block a follow-up header of the rebound by Lucas Pérez.
“We deserved to have scored that early goal,” mentioned new Alavés coach Juan Muñiz.
“You can’t miss those kinds of opportunities and still have much of a chance of pulling out the match. (Against Madrid) you have to take advantage of the scant opportunities you get.”
Mendy, who might play extra after Marcelo was sidelined with a muscle damage earlier Friday, cued Madrid’s first purpose. He broke into the world and was tripped by Ximo Navarro from a careless deal with try. With Ramos, Madrid’s common penalty taker, unavailable, Benzema transformed. His 18th league purpose of the season is second solely to Messi’s 22.
Alavés tried to rally via Oliver Burke. The Scottish ahead drew a save from Madrid goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois within the 27th. Minutes later he dribbled previous Vázquez and Militão, solely to see Sanmartín scuff his harmful move again to the centre of the world.
Madrid took full management simply after halftime when Benzema broke Alavés’ offside entice to succeed in Rodrygo’s through-ball. Benzema drew Alavés goalie Roberto Jiménez to him and laid off for Asensio to faucet into the open internet. A video evaluate needed to overturn the preliminary determination that Benzema was offside.
Alavés was enjoying its first match underneath Muñiz, who changed Asier Garitano after the staff misplaced 5 in a row. The new defeat left the Basque Country membership three factors above the relegation zone.
The match was performed with out followers in Madrid’s smaller Alfredo Di Stéfano Stadium whereas Santiago Bernabéu Stadium is present process renovations.
Domingo’s Duarte scored the successful purpose after organising Granada’s opener in a 3-2 victory at Real Sociedad, conserving alive his aspect’s probabilities of qualifying for the Europa League.
Granada was stage on factors with Valencia, and one level behind Sociedad. The three are in rivalry with Getafe and Villarreal for a spot within the Europa League.
Granada hosts Madrid on Monday. AP