Real’s superhero Cristiano Ronaldo bagged a hat-trick as Real Madrid banged Real Sociedad 5-2 in La Liga on February 10 to warm up for their Champions League fight with Paris St Germain in style.
Where Atletico Madrid saw off Malaga 1-0 in a tight game temporarily close the gap on leaders Barcelona to six points. Where Real’s big success over Sociedad took them third above Valencia but they trail Barcelona by 16 points as they turn their attention to the defence of their Champions League title against PSG at the Bernabeu on Wednesday.
Real Madrid boss Zinedine Zidane rested Casemiro and Gareth Bale with one eye on that, but the Welsh winger’s substitute Lucas Vazquez took full advantage when he headed home Ronaldo’s cross after 49 seconds. Striker Karim Benzema struck the post with a low effort as he failed to break his scoring drought, the French striker is now without a league goal since November, as Real pressed to add to their advantage.
They did just that after 27 minutes when a brilliant turn by Asensio unlocked Sociedad’s defence and Marcelo crossed for Ronaldo to slam home from close range. Midfielder Toni Kroos curled home the third from outside the area and Ronaldo headed home Luka Modric’s corner in a four-minute spell before the interval.
The Portuguese forward completed his treble after Geronimo Rulli beat away substitute Bale’s long-range effort. Jon Bautista and Asier Illaramendi netted consolation goals for Real Sociedad.
Malaga, ingrained to the bottom of the table and have picked up two points in their last eight games.
Meanwhile, Alaves continued their good form under Abelardo, winning 2-1 at fifth-place Villarreal to climb to 16th and seven points above the relegation zone while Eibar moved sixth thanks to a 1-0 win at Leganes as Ivan Ramis scored deep into stoppage-time.
About the Author
Tanya Attri is a sports journalist who lives in Sonipat and working
for Sports Flashes. She has also worked with Times of India for 5
months as a Junior Editor. She is a sports freak and writes for all
the sports but has special liking for badminton.