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Played
February 12, 2012 8:30 p.m. GMT
Estadio Santiago Bernabéu — Madrid
Referee:‬ Alberto Undiano‎
Attendance:‬ 71000‎
 
Top of the Match
Cristiano Ronaldo
Cristiano Ronaldo
Real Madrid CF
Cristiano Ronaldo
Cristiano Ronaldo
Real Madrid CF
Flop of the Match
Iborra
Iborra
Levante UD
Iborra
Iborra
Levante UD

Real Madrid 4-2 Levante: Ronaldo nets superb hat-trick to send Jose Mourinho's side 10 points clear at summit of La Liga

Los Blancos run riot in the second half as the away side struggle after going down to 10 men, and the clinical Portuguese proved pivotal in deciding the thrilling contest

By Charlie Scott

Cristiano Ronaldo, Real Madrid, Levante
Getty Images
Cristiano Ronaldo's hat-trick has edged Real Madrid closer to the Primera Division title after his heroics helped the league leaders to a 4-2 victory over Levante, and opened up a 10-point gap over Barcelona at the top.

After weathering the Madrid storm with 11 men in the first half, Levante failed to do the same with 10 in the second half, as Ronaldo completed his hat-trick and Karim Benzema scored a fine effort, leaving Jose Mourinho's side in a dominant position at the summit of La Liga.

Despite Madrid starting brighter than their opponents, it was the away side that surprisingly opened the scoring as Gustavo Cabral poked home from close range after Sergio Ramos had inadvertently flicked Francisco Farinos' free kick into his path.

Mourinho's men found their stride after going a goal behind, and began to pepper Gustavo Munua's goal with efforts. Eventually, their perseverance paid off minutes before half time through a Ronaldo penalty as Iborra was given a second yellow card for handball inside the Levante box.

Madrid came racing out of the blocks in the second half, with Ronaldo scoring his second and third goals of the evening within 15 minutes of the restart.

Higuain did superbly to set up the Portuguese's second goal, beating his man down the right before lifting a fantastic cross into the penalty area, that Ronaldo headed firmly past Munua to give his side a deserved lead.

The goal that completed his hat-trick, however, was the pick of the lot. He picked the ball up 35 yards from goal, carried it 10 yards, before unleashing an unstoppable dipping effort with his right foot that found the top right hand corner of Munua's net.

That strike, while also Ronaldo's 13th hat-trick in the white of Madrid, also had historical significance - it was the club's 4000th La Liga goal inside the Santiago Bernabeu since its opening in December 1947.

Levante had a part to play in the contest too, however, and scored a surprise second to make it 3-2 when Arouna Kone rose highest above Sergio Ramos and Pepe to plant a header past Iker Casillas, after an enticing ball from the left by Oscar Serrano.

Just as the game seemed to settle down, Benzema got in on the act for the home side to effectively end the match as a contest.

Ronaldo collected possession on the edge of the Levante area, before rolling to the left to Benzema, who shifted his body from left to right before wrapping his foot round the ball and sending a fine effort into the far corner of the net.

Madrid went in search of a fifth as the game wore on, but were met by some resolute defending by Levante. However, they had did enough to ensure that the points remained in the capital, despite the best efforts of the visitors.

The win takes Los Merengues 10 points clear of second-placed Barcelona in La Liga and puts them firmly in control of the title race. Levante, meanwhile, remain in fourth place, despite not having won in the league since December 10.


Real Madrid CF

1
Iker Casillas
Goalkeeper
2.50
3
Pepe
Defender
49′
2.50
4
Sergio Ramos
Defender
36′
2.50
5
Fabio Coentrao
Defender
57′
3.00
17
Arbeloa
Defender
84′
3.00
11
Mesut Özil
Midfielder
81′
3.50
25
Esteban Granero
Midfielder
76′
2.50
14
Xabi Alonso
Midfielder
3.00
7
Cristiano Ronaldo
Midfielder
45′ 50′ 57′ 66′
4.50
9
Karim Benzema
Striker
66′
3.50
9
3.00

Levante UD

3.00
-
Gustavo Munúa
Goalkeeper
2.50
-
2.50
-
Javi Venta
Defender
3.00
18
Ballesteros
Defender
3.50
22
2.50
8
Farinós
Midfielder
5′
2.50
-
Óscar Serrano
Midfielder
34′ 63′
1.50
10
Iborra
Midfielder
37′ 43′
2.50
23
Valdo
Midfielder
76′
2.50
25
Nabil El Zhar
Midfielder
46′
3.50
9

Substitutes

1
Adàn
Goalkeeper
0.00
2
0.00
33
0.00
18
Nuri Sahin
Midfielder
0.00
6
Sami Khedira
Midfielder
76′
3.00
22
Kaká
Midfielder
81′
3.00
7
2.50

Substitutes

0.00
-
K. Navas
Goalkeeper
0.00
12
2.50
19
2.00
6
Pallardó
Midfielder
46′
0.00
22
0.00
-
0.00
-

Coach/Manager

-
0.00

Coach/Manager

 - 
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  • Goal
  • Own Goal
  • Penalty
  • Penalty Missed
  • Yellow Card
  • Assist
  • Penalty Save
  • Penalty Shootout Goal
  • Penalty Shootout Miss
  • Yellow Card / Red Card
  • Red Card
  • Substitution IN
  • Substitution OUT
  • Injury
  • Goal.com Rating
  • Goal.com Man of the Match
  • Goal.com Flop of the Match
  • Top & Flop Global Ranking
  • Fans' Man of the Match
  • Fans' Flop of the Match
Results
 
Top Scorers
Player   Goals Penalties
Cristiano Ronaldo Cristiano Ronaldo
Striker
Real Madrid
28 6
Diego Costa Diego Costa
Striker
Atl. Madrid
27 5
Lionel Messi Lionel Messi
Striker
Barcelona
25 6
Karim Benzema Karim Benzema
Striker
Real Madrid
17 0
Alexis Sánchez Alexis Sánchez
Striker
Barcelona
17 0