Thursday, May 23

Benzema hits double as Real Madrid win

Real Madrid beat 10-man Athletic Bilbao 3-1 to go level on points at the top of La Liga. Real were fresh from a big 2-0 win over city rivals Atletico and now cruised another win to take them to third.

Raul Garcia was sent off after being given his second yellow card in the opening 13 minutes for a pair of fouls. In the latter stages of the first half, Zidane’s side took firm control. And it eventually paid off with an exquisite strike from Toni Kroos just before the break.

The score was leveled shortly after the break by Bilbao, who had looked threatening at times in the first half. When Thibaut Courtois spilled Ander Capa’s close-range shot right back in his direction and the Athletic man tucked away from the rebound.

The top scorer for Real Madrid, Benzema, shot the hosts out in front in the 74th minute with a fine header. To hold Real in the lead, Courtois made a big save down the stretch and Benzema immediately added his second from the counter. Real had enjoyed a remarkable last week, beating Sevilla and Borussia Monchengladbach.

A comprehensive 2-0 win over local rivals Atletico to ease the pressure on Zidane after a stuttering start to the campaign. Real have now won four games in a row in all competitions as they continue to turn their season around. Real Sociedad, Atletico Madrid, and Real Madrid are all on 26 points at the top of La Liga.

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