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Deportivo La Coruña
May 4, 2014
• Estadio Santiago Bernabéu, Madrid
Referee: Carlos Clos Gomez
• Attendance: 71897
Sergio Ramos 59'
Cristiano Ronaldo 90'+
J. Mathieu 44'
Dani Parejo 65'
Shots on Target
Full time in Santiago Bernabeu! Real Madrid fail to take full advantage of Atletico Madrid's loss and only manage a point in a 2-2 draw against Valencia in La Liga. Los Che went ahead twice in the match and definitely deserved to take something out of the game but it will go down as an opportunity missed for Carlo Ancelotti's outfit as they move five points behind Atletico in the table. Ronaldo proved to be the hero in the end as he netted the equaliser deep in injury time to make sure the honours were even. It is anyone's guess where the title is going now, but advantage goes back to Diego Simeone's men! I'm Martin Macdonald, thanks for joining us! See you next time!
90' + 5'
90' + 4'
Yellow CardSofiane Feghouli
90' + 4'
Ronaldooooo! HE ALMOST WINS IT!!! The Portuguese rises high at the back post and meets a cross with a bullet header, but his attempt goes wide of the post! That was a real chance!
90' + 2'
AssistÁngel Di María
90' + 2'
GOOOOOAAAAALLLLL!!! GOOOOAAAAALLLL!!! GOOOOAAAALLL!! REAL MADRID EQUALISE!! Di Maria gets the ball at the back post and lifts a volley into the box and Ronaldo sends the ball into the corner with a terrific flick of his right boot! Amazing scenes! Two-two!
90' + 1'
A massive FIVE minutes of injury time added by the official! That'll be sure to give Madrid a boost in the dying moments of the game. Is there another big opportunity left for the home side?
Sergio Ramos receives a fizzed pass from Xabi Alonso and then dinks a useful cross to the front post, but Bale just can't get enough purchase on his header and ends up sending an attempt trickling by the post.
Parejo receives the wrath of the Santiago Bernabeu crowd as he goes down in the middle of the park clutching his thighs and complaining of cramp. He certainly receives his fair share of abuse as he walks off the park to receive treatment, but I doubt he'll care too much.
Parejo takes the pressure completely off his team-mates as he takes the ball for a run and keeps the move alive by sliding the ball away from the feet of Alonso, which turns into a pass down the left for Bernat. The former Madrid man has been superb in this second half against his former club.
Ancelotti goes for broke now and introduces Alvaro Morata in place of Benzema up top. The substitute is involved straight away as he collects the ball in the final third and drives forward before smashing a strike over the bar! Ronaldo really isn't happy, and is demanding an explanation as to why he didn't receive the pass! He should have, as he was wide open!
I wonder what the odds were on Barcelona, Atletico Madrid and Real Madrid ALL to fail to win this weekend. Nobody seems to want to take the initiative in the title race it seems, but Los Blancos still have time to at least claim a point here!
Yellow CardDiego Alves
We've perhaps been given an insight into the tactics of Valencia for the remainder of the match here as Alves is awarded a yellow card for time wasting with his goal kick. This would be such a massive scalp for Valencia, so you can't blame them really!
RONALDOOOO! The Ballon d'Or smashes a 25-yard free kick towards the bottom corner but, for the fifth or sixth time tonight, sees his attempt beat away from goal by Alves! It has been quite a feud between those two tonight! The Valencia man on top!
Di Maria takes the corner kick from the left-hand side and whips the set-piece to the back post for Varane, but the Frenchman's header goes a few yards over the bar and doesn't pose a threat to Diego Alves. If Madrid are going to have a chance to win they need the equaliser right away.
Real signs of frustration showing in the Madrid ranks now. Firstly Carvajal loses the rag with Parejo despite the fact the Valencia man won the ball and then Ronaldo gives the referee an earful, demanding a free kick after a shove from Mathieu.
Ancelotti makes his second change of the match, and it's probably a sign of respect to Valencia that he's introduced the defensively minded Casemiro in place of the more offensive Isco. Clearly aware of Los Che's pacey counterattacks!
Yellow CardSeydou Keita
Just over 20 minutes remaining here at Santiago Bernabeu. They've got plenty of time to claim the draw, but that wouldn't be a sufficient result considering they would have failed to take advantage of Atletico's loss today.
Juan Antonio Pizzi reacts almost immediately to going 2-0 up by withdrawing the disappointing Alcacer for Jonas, who'll feature as the lone striker.
GOOOOOOAAAAAAALLLLLLL FOR VALENCIA!! THEY RETAKE THE LEAD! Feghouli does brilliantly to skip past two or three Madrid challenges before reversing a ball to the back post for Parejo, who shows composure to pass the ball into the bottom right corner! Two-one!
The game is really starting to open up here! It wouldn't surprise me at all if we had two or three more goals in this! But who will they be for? Just so much on the line!
Santiago Bernabeu absolutely exploded after that goal! Now Valencia need to make sure their heads go down, as they are definitely still in with a shout to claim all three points. They just need to curb the ascendancy of Ancelotti's men!
Sergio Ramos loves scoring important goals it seems!
GOOOOOOAAAALLLLLLLL FOR REAL MADRID!!! LOS BLANCOS EQUALISE!! Ronaldo peels away at the back post and heads the ball back into the danger area for Sergio Ramos, who's in the right place at the right time to nod past Alves! One-one!
Madrid get the free kick just a few yards inside from the right wing. Di Maria clips the set-piece into the box but Mathieu rises high to bullet the ball out of the danger area. This Valencia defence looking sturdy tonight.
Madrid pass up a great chance! A set-piece comes in from the right-hand side and Varane meets the ball on the edge of the six yard box, but can't sort out his feet and eventually fumbles his strike wide!
Save AGAIN from Alves! He looks unbeatable tonight! This time Ronaldo latches on to a loose ball on the edge of the box and squeezes a half volley towards the bottom corner, only to be foiled by the right hand of the goalkeeper!
Another save by Alves! Sergio Ramos bulldozes his way through the centre and the ball falls kindly to the Di Maria on the edge of the box, who drives a shot towards the bottom left corner. The Valencia goalkeeper gets down quickly to turn the ball round the post!
Yellow CardÁngel Di María
Di Maria demands a penalty from the referee as he smashes the ball off the arm of Joao Pereira inside the box. It did hit the Valencia right-back on the arm, but it was only from two or three yards away. Would have been a harsh penalty. Not given.
The real problem Madrid have here is that the more they press for the equaliser and potentially a winner, the more space will be created for Valencia's potent counterattacks. Feghouli, Parejo, Vargas; they can all move the ball quickly forward and exploit space awarded to them.
A change to report for you at half time as Asier Illarramendi is replaced in the middle of midfield by Angel di Maria. Ancelotti looking to add a little more pace and tempo to his central midfield trio it seems!
Ángel Di María
We are back under way in this Spanish Primera Division clash! Can Madrid come back from a goal behind to claim the win and heap pressure on Atletico at the top of the table?! They've got 45 minutes to do so!
Half time in Santiago Bernabeu. What was meant to be a dream day for Madrid due to the loss of Atletico is turning into a bit of a nightmare as they trail 1-0 at home to Valencia. Los Blancos started the match well but failed to capitalise on their dominance, which awarded the visitors a route back into contention. It was a tale of two in-form goalkeepers up until a minute before the break, when Jeremy Mathieu opened the scoring with a close range header. A very, very, interesting second period in store!
GOOOOOAAAALLLL!!! GOOOAAALLLL!!! GOOOAAAALLLL!!! VALENCIA TAKE THE LEAD!! Parejo swings in a corner kick to just inside the six yard box and Mathieu shakes off the attentions of Varane to divert the ball over the line with a close range header!! One-nil!
FANTASTIC SAVE BY DIEGO LOPEZ!! Feghouli takes on Varane inside the box and flashes a strike towards the top left corner, but the Madrid keeper is on his toes and and tips the attempt over the bar! Brilliant!
Diego Alves denies Ronaldo again! The Madrid man glides across the pitch at tremendous speed and cuts along the edge of the box before rifling a left-footed strike towards the bottom corner, but he is foiled by the Valencia keeper again, who makes the save with a strong left hand!
Marcelo stretches his legs down the left-hand side once again and gets into a useful position up the park, but any potential attack fails when the Brazilian's shallow cross is easily dealt with and headed clear by Costa.
Ohhhh poor touch from Alcacer! Vargas receives the ball 25 yards out in the inside right channel and teases a superb cross along the Madrid box. The 20-year-old just wasn't concentrating enough though and can't take the ball into his path, allowing it to go beyond him to the wing! If he collected that he would have had a free strike at goal!
It has been all Madrid in the past few minutes as Ancelotti's men step up their attempts to grab a goal before half time. Valencia pretty well organised at the back though so it may take a moment of magic to break the deadlock.
Madrid counterattack at pace through Bale through the middle. The Welshman slides a pass out to Benzema on the left, who shifts the ball past Costa and looks to strike at goal, but his shot is poorly executed and ends up going high into the crowd.
Ronaldo just stretches for the ball inside the box and can't sort out his feet to take the ball past Mathieu, and so eventually just slumps to the floor. Maybe he just fancied a little rest inside the Valencia box!
Madrid came flying out of the box in the first few minutes and will be quite aggrieved they didn't open the scoring at that time, but Valencia have just hauled themselves back into contention and look pretty useful on the counter. Both keepers have made important saves.
Ronaldooooo! He's getting closer! This time he runs in behind and leaves Ricardo Costa for dead with pace before drilling a strike at goal, but Diego Alves once again remains solid to palm the ball round the post! Great save!
Illarramendi once again pops the ball inside, this time to the feet of Ronaldo. The latter then wonderfully flicks the ball on to the oncoming Isco who in turn passes inside to Benzema. The Frenchman just delays in pulling the trigger though which allows Valencia to smuggle clear. What a superb team goal that would have been!
Illarremendi fizzes a pass to the chest of Isco and the former Malaga man takes an assured touch before looping a volley at goal, but the attempt goes high and wide over the bar for a Valencia goal kick. Isco wants the corner but there was no touch on the way through.
Ricardo Costa proactively comes out of his position in defence to rob Benzema of the ball and burst ahead through midfield. He takes a heavy touch and looks to have lost the ball, but eventually recovers with a perfectly-timed tackle of Carvajal to keep the move going.
Xabi Alonso takes a few strides forward through the centre and scoops a lovely pass over the top of the defence for Ronaldo, but the path through to the Portuguese is just blocked by Mathieu, who rises high to clear the ball away! Almost a terrific ball!
Well folks, it definitely should be one goal a-piece in Santiago Bernabeu! Ronaldo and Parejo both passing up golden opportunities to put their respective sides ahead!
What a fantastic save from Diego Lopez!!! Feghouli pops up in a position deep on the right wing and whips a superb cross to the back post for Parejo, who heads at goal from seven yards out! The Madrid keeper's reactions are brilliant as he tips the ball on to the crossbar! Valencia should be one up, though!
Valencia are just starting to find their feet in the match now and are enjoying a small period of sustained possession in the middle of the park. They just need to get the dangermen, Feghouli, Alcacer and Vargas, on the ball more.
Marcelo collects the ball on the left-hand side and fizzes a sensational diagonal pass to the right for Benzema, who takes on touch before drilling a teasing cross into the box. It was begging to be put home, but there were no takers for Los Blancos!
Benzema receives the ball to feet just on the edge of the box and then takes a couple of strides into the penalty area, but he is ushered off the ball by the retreating Feghouli, who gets back into a defensive position to see it out for a goal kick.
BENZEMA! Just wide! Bale takes on Javi Fuego inside the box and skips past the challenge of the Valencia midfielder to hit the byline and dig out a cross to the back post. The former Lyon striker is just leaning back as he directs his header towards goal though, and his attempt goes a yard the wrong side of the post.
Lots of early pressure from Real Madrid here. They should already have registered a goal through that Ronaldo chance but by the way the game has started, we probably won't be waiting too long to see the home fans celebrate. Valencia just need to get through these opening minutes unscathed, or they could be the victim of a heavy loss.
Saaaaaaaaave by Diego Alves! Ronaldo exchanges a lovely one-two on the edge of the box with Bale and goes through on goal, but he is denied by the oncoming Valencia goalkeeper, who makes himself big to make a terrific block!
Benzema looks to latch on to a pass over the top of the defence from Sergio Ramos, but there was just too much on it and the Frenchman can't stretch out his foot to take the ball under control. Valencia eventually get the goal kick.
We are under way in the Spanish capital!
The players have taken to the field and we are almost ready for kick-off! That Atletico loss earlier on today will certainly ensure an expectant crowd at Santiago Bernabeu!
Juan Antonio Pizzi will be happy to welcome back Paco Alcacer into the team. The 20-year-old missed the midweek European clash with Sevilla due to suspension, but is brought back into action straight away for the match at Santiago Bernabeu.
Angel di Maria is given a rest and is also on the bench, so Asier Illarramendi and Isco come in alongside Xabi Alonso in the middle of the park for Real Madrid. The prolific 'BBC' trio of Cristiano, Bale, and Benzema once again feature in the first XI.
Some good news and some bad news on the injury front it seems for Ancelotti. Luka Modric sat out training at the end of the week and will not feature at all tonight, but a boost for Los Blancos comes from the return of Sami Khedira, who'll be on the bench. The German's season has been ruined by a knee injury, but will be eager to get some game time before the end of the season.
Valencia (4-2-3-1): Alves; Pereira, R. Costa, Mathieu, Bernat; Javi Fuego, Keita; Feghouli, Parejo, Vargas; Alcacer.
Real Madrid (4-3-3): Diego Lopez; Carvajal, Varane, Ramos, Marcelo; Illaramendi, Xabi Alonso, Isco; Bale, Ronaldo, Benzema.
Los Che have not picked up all three points at Santiago Bernabeu in six years, and were defeated 3-2 at the Mestalla in the reverse league fixture in December. A late Jese Rodriguez goal sealed the victory for Real Madrid on that occasion.
Madrid have won five games on the bounce, including two wins over Bayern Munich, and have netted a massive 14 goals in those games. You wouldn't put it past them adding a few more to that tally tonight!
The pre-match stats don't make particularly good reading for Valencia fans...
Madrid are coming off a much better midweek European trip as they progressed to the final of the Champions League for the first time in 12 years thanks to a supremely impressive 5-0 aggregate victory over reigning champions, Bayern Munich.
Conversely, Valencia will still be reeling after their heartbreaking last minute exit from the Europa League on Thursday at the hands of their domestic rivals, Sevilla. A 94th minute away goal from Stephane Mbia sent Los Che crashing out of the competition despite them winning 3-1 on the night.
Carlo Ancelotti's men head into the match tonight with their tails up after the news that Atletico Madrid lost 2-0 away at Levante earlier on today, which means Los Blancos can move just three points behind their arch rivals with a win here. The title race just got blown wide open again!
I'm Martin Macdonald, and I'll be taking you through the action!
Good evening folks, welcome to LIVE coverage of the Spanish Primera Division clash between Real Madrid and Valencia from Santiago Bernabeu!
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