Real Betis 3-5 Real Madrid: Marco Asensio Nets Landmark Goal as Los Blancos Edge Eight-Goal Thriller

Real Madrid rounded off a high-scoring and successful week with a 5-3 away win over Real Betis on Sunday evening which truly portrayed the bipolar campaign the Spanish capital side are enduring this year. 

After Marco Asensio headed his side into the lead during the opening exchanges, Los Blancos’ defensive frailties were thrown into the spotlight once again, as Aissa Mandi squared things up before Nacho Fernandez bundled the ball into his own net just four minutes later. 

However, after the break, Sergio Ramos quickly brought his side level before Asensio netted the famous all-whites’ 6000th league goal with a delicious first-time finish, completing the 15-minute comeback. 

The clash looked all but a formality after Cristiano Ronaldo netted Real Madrid’s fourth of the evening shortly after the hour-mark, however, substitute Sergio Leon gave Betis a glimmer of hope going into the final five minutes of normal time after turning home from a tight angle. 

But, while pushing for the equaliser, a misplaced Cristian Tello pass allowed Karim Benzema to grab a much-needed goal and secure an equally important three points, extending the buffer over Sevilla in fourth place to six once again. 

Inside the highly charged, almost over spilling Estadio Benito Villamarin, both sides were afforded spells of expansive football during the opening exchanges, but it was the visitors who drew first blood on the 10-minute mark as Asensio nodded home from 12 yards.

The hosts’ lack of defensive action could certainly be called into question, as Cristiano Ronaldo was allowed to trot into the area before unleashing a stinging effort which was parried back into the path of the Spaniard by Beticos’ goalkeeper Antonio Adan, allowing the 22-year-old to direct his attempt into the corner of the net unopposed.

After finding themselves behind, Quique Setien’s men began to assert their style of play which has made them such an admirable outfit this term, and their spell of dominance almost proved fruitful shortly before the midway point of the first-half as Mandi latched onto Joaquin’s fizzed corner, but the defender could only flash his header wide.

As the first 45 ticked on, Real Betis maintained their grip on the contest, despite remaining behind on the scoreboard, and Joaquin, who has been a revelation in Seville so far this campaign, looked certain to pull his side level with a sweetly struck 25-yard free-kick, only for Los Blancos custodian Keylor Navas to produce, undoubtedly, one of his stops of the season and retain the capital club’s advantage.

However, shortly after the half-hour mark the Costa Rica international could do nothing to deny Mandi levelling things up, as the 26-year-old rose above Casemiro inside the six-yard box and latched on to yet another sensationally delivered cross from Joaquin before powering his header home sparking absolute bedlam behind the Real Madrid goal.

But, those images of supporters clambering over one another were nothing compared to that of four minutes later when Nacho turned the ball into his own net to give the hosts the lead.

Again, Joaquin catalysed the attack by finding young left-back Junior, who was enjoying only his second senior contest, in acres of space on the left-hand side before the 21-year-old burst into the area unchallenged and attempted to fire his shot across Navas.

The 31-year-old was able to get two hands to it, however, not for the first time this campaign, his parry was less than convincing, and the stop ended up arrowing into the path of Nacho, who could not react quick enough to evade deflecting the ball into his own unguarded goal and sending his side in a one down at the break. 

After a half-time filled with the buoyant Betis diehards in fine voice, the masses were subdued within just five minutes, as Ramos, who started his career just three miles away from the Estadio Benito Villamarin with bitter rivals Sevilla, powered a trademark headed effort which kissed the underside of the crossbar before nestling in the back of Adan’s net.

Whatever orders Zidane barked at his outfit during the break following their underwhelming opening 45 minutes certainly appeared to hold an impact, as shortly after his side drew level, Gareth Bale was smartly denied twice in quick succession after the Welshman was able to overcome the opposition’s high defensive line, but during the reigning Premier Division champions’ next attack, Asensio had no such issue.

Dani Carvajal utilised his raw pace and attacking guile on the right-hand side before cleverly pulling a low cross back into the direction of the breaking Spaniard, who dispatched his attempt first time to complete the stunning 15-minute turnaround as well as mark his side’s 6000th La Liga goal – the only club in history to reach that height.

However, while in the first-half Beticos rallied when faced with adversity, the second saw no such thing, as shortly after the hour-mark, Ronaldo doubled Real Madrid’s advantage.

The five-time Ballon d’Or-winner was again afforded too much space by the hosts’ defence, and after taking possession inside the area, switched play to his right foot before dispatching an attempt which carried too much venom for the hands of Adan.

However, with just five minutes remaining, the contest was blown wide open once again as Leon tucked home from a tight angle to reduce the hosts’ deficit to a single goal.

Junior, who had been hugely impressive despite his inexperience at the top level, burst down the left wing before driving a low ball across the face of goal, wrong-footing Navas and allowing the 29-year-old substitute to add an edge to the final moments.

But, while searching for the equaliser, Tello’s lackadaisical pass offered Lucas Vasquez the opportunity to enjoy some intricate play on the edge of the area with Benzema before the Frenchman eventually slotted his effort past Adan to wrap up all three points. 

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02 2018
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Barcelona Legend Xavi Slams Cristiano Ronaldo in Favour of Former Blaugrana Teammate Neymar

Both Cristiano Ronaldo and Neymar came head to head this week in an exciting Champions League tie where ?Real Madrid left victorious. However, ex-Barcelona midfielder Xavi made a few comments following the match in regard to Cristiano’s ability in comparison to Neymar. 

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In a rather heated interview with So Foot, Xavi was quick to say that he believes that his former Brazilian teammate is now a better player than the five time Ballon d’Or winner. 

“I read many articles ?that said that Cristiano (Ronaldo) was still above Neymar. No, no, it’s unfair,” the former Spanish international mentioned. 

Real Madrid v Paris Saint-Germain - UEFA Champions League Round of 16: First Leg

Xavi, who now plays for Al Sadd in Qatar, played with Neymar for just two years before his departure but has backed up the Brazilian within this interview by questioning the ability of Ronaldo. 

Regarding the recent Champions League tie, Xavi mentioned: “What did Ronaldo do? He scored a penalty and a knee goal. But what about the dangerous situations created by Neymar? The problems that he caused Madrid? And the counter attacks that he launched.”.

Real Madrid v Paris Saint-Germain - UEFA Champions League Round of 16: First Leg

Now 33-years-old, Cristiano Ronaldo has struggled within La Liga, scoring 11 goals in 18 games. Although this is still a healthy return, it is nothing compared to what we expect of the Real Madrid star. 

In comparison, Neymar has scored 19 goals in 19 appearances for PSG this season in Ligue 1, demonstrating a clear difference in form between the Brazilian and the Portuguese. 

Nonetheless, the reverse fixture for this Champions League tie will certainly be interesting as the ?Parisians will travel to Madrid to fight for their place in the next round of the competition. 


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02 2018
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Zinedine Zidane Admits Pressure at Real Madrid Is ‘Extremely Tiring’ Amid Speculation Over Future

?Real Madrid boss Zinedine Zidane has admitted the incessant speculation surrounding his future is “extremely tiring”.

The Frenchman remains under pressure with his side enduring a dismal La Liga campaign, although last week’s 3-1 victory over Paris Saint-Germain in the first leg of the Champions League last-16 provided some welcome relief.

Zidane, though, is fully aware of the expectation at the Bernabeu, and has set his sights on “getting to the end of the season”.

Real Madrid v Paris Saint-Germain - UEFA Champions League Round of 16: First Leg

“For me the most important thing is what I’m doing now, the day to day. I’m not looking further than that,” he said – quoted by ?the Daily Mail.

“I want to get to the end of the season. I’m only bothered about what’s at stake and I don’t want to talk about anything else.

“It’s extremely tiring, for sure, and all the more so at Real Madrid. Of course the time could come when a change is needed, but that’s the case for everyone, the players too.

“This profession can wear you out but here more than in other places.”

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After Wednesday night’s win over PSG, Real Madrid now turn their attention back to La Liga. Zidane’s side travel to Real Betis 17 points behind leaders Barcelona and looking to avoid a repeat of the 1-0 defeat suffered at the hands of Quique Setien’s side in September.

“We performed very well the other night and now we’ve got to focus on our bread and butter, which is LaLiga,” said Zidane.

“We haven’t had many days to rest up but that’s just the way it goes. We’re now just thinking about doing a good job tomorrow.

“Betis are a very good side and are very strong on their own patch. We know how tough it’s going to be but we’ve got our own weapons.”

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02 2018
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Philippe Coutinho Shares Harry Kane’s Potential Real Madrid Squad Number With Teammates

?Philippe Coutinho has reportedly told his Barcelona teammates the squad number Real Madrid would give Harry Kane, should he sign for the Spanish giants.

Kane has reportedly topped president Florentino Perez’s summer hit-list after his form in 2017 saw him score more goals than both Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi, and if Real get their way, Kane could be playing alongside Ronaldo next season.

Tottenham Hotspur v Liverpool - Premier League

According to Diario Gol (via the ?Express) Coutinho has been sharing the idea that Kane will receive the number ten shirt – currently occupied by former Spurs teammate Luka Modric – should he make the switch to the Bernabeu in the summer.

Even though Modric is under contract at Madrid until 2020, it’s believed Real are keen to award the striker the number ten shirt, as are Madrid’s sponsor Adidas who would be keen for the Spurs man to get the shirt in order to boost shirt sales.

Tottenham Hotspur FC Press Conference

In fact, the Express have also claimed the sports brand have even began planning marketing campaigns for when the 23-year-old signs for Madrid, although no contact between the two clubs have been made yet.

Kane has been on scintillating form this season, bagging his 100th Premier League goal during Tottenham’s recent 2-2 draw with Liverpool, and currently has 23 goals in 26 league appearances already this season.


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Tottenham will be hoping they can fend off any interest from Europe’s top clubs, however for now, they will be focused on their trip to Crystal Palace on Monday night as they look to close the gap on Chelsea – who currently occupy fourth place in the league table.

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02 2018
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Spanish Report Claims Ronaldo Is ‘Confident’ Florentino Perez Will Bring Harry Kane to Real Madrid

?Current Ballon d’Or holder Cristiano Ronaldo believes Florentino Perez will secure the signing of Harry Kane as the Real Madrid president always gets what he wants.

The Tottenham forward is enjoying yet another stellar season under Mauricio Pochettino, having scored an astonishing 23 goals in 26 Premier League appearances so far this season, and recently grabbed his 100th Premier League goal during Tottenham’s 2-2 draw with Liverpool.

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England fans will be hoping Kane can transfer his club form onto the international stage when England travel to Russia for the 2018 World Cup in Russia, with many experts believing the 24-year-old can lead his country to World Cup glory.

Unfortunately for Tottenham fans, Kane’s outstanding form has gained recognition amongst Europe’s top clubs, and according to Spanish news outlet ?Don Balon, Ronaldo believes Kane is now at the top of president Perez’s hit-list and that the striker will join the European champions ahead of the 2018-19 season.

Real Madrid v Tottenham Hotspur - UEFA Champions League

Reports are suggesting Perez is set to make a lucrative offer to try and force Tottenham to sell, a deal which may include former Spur Gareth Bale heading the other way. Bale seems to have fallen out of favour at the Santiago Bernabeu, and may well be used as a bargaining chip in a deal to bring Kane to Madrid.

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Tottenham currently sit in fifth place in the Premier League, however have picked up seven points from their last three games against Manchester United, Liverpool and Arsenal. Kane will be looking to add to his Premier League goal tally when Tottenham travel to Crystal Palace on Monday night.

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