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Key Events

86'
Arnau Puigmal
Yellow Card
75'
D. Alaba
Goal
1 - 2
66'
Curro Sánchez
Yellow Card
61'
Lucas Vázquez
K. Benzema
1 - 1
6'
L. Ramazani
Íñigo Eguaras
1 - 0

Match Stats

Possession
32% 67%
3
4
Shots Off Target
Shots On Target 6 15
Total Passes 315 649
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Commentary

That's all from us, we hope you enjoyed the game. Until next time, goodbye!
That opening match victory gets last season's champions off to a winning start, and Los Blancos are second in the league behind Villarreal with only three games of the opening 10 still to be played. Almeria return to the top flight with a loss, but were excellent throughout, and will fancy their chances against anyone having been as good as they were against the champions.
He may not have scored or assisted, but Vinicius Junior excelled down the left for Real in this game. He finished it with two on-target shots from four attempts, as well as four key passes. He engaged in 10 duels, having 18 touches in the box and completing 35 passes in the final third. He was fouled four times too, getting Curro booked in the process, and in that kind of form, would be an absolute nuisance for any defender in world football.
The champions have their first win of the new season, but they were made to work so, so hard for it! A resolute performance from Almeria almost gave Madrid an almighty scare with that early goal, but Los Blancos had a mountain of chances and eventually turned the game on its head through those second-half strikes from Vazquez and Alaba. Real were good going forward, but Almeria's excellent defensive performance almost blunted their star-studded attack, in a game with plenty of positives for both sides.
90' + 6' FULL-TIME: ALMERIA 1-2 REAL MADRID.
90' + 5' Another fast break from the hosts sees Sousa play Lazo down the byline, but his ball back inside is intercepted by Nacho and Courtois re-gains possession.
90' + 3' SAVED!!! A deep free-kick is swung into the box by Curro, and Ely gets a good head to it, forcing a save from Courtois!
90' + 2' Curro's corner lands on the head of Chumi, but he doesn't have time to pick his spot and the header goes well over the bar.
90' We'll play SIX minutes of added time, and there's still time for the hosts to get something from this game!
88' SAVED!!! Alaba's cross into the middle is met by no-one, but Vazquez arrives late to fire a low shot from the edge of the box! It's curling into the far corner before Martinez parries it away, and Akieme clears it at the second time of asking!
Arnau Puigmal
Yellow Card
86' Hazard cuts inside and heads forward, but is taken out by a poor challenge by Puigmal, who is booked.
85' SAVED!!! Costa cuts the ball back into the box, where Portillo has his first-time effort blocked, but it bounces up to Lazo and his rebound draws a good low save from Courtois!
Casemiro
T. Kroos
83' Kroos has also had the ball on a string at times, and comes off now for Casemiro to see out the match.
Dani Ceballos
Vinícius Júnior
83' Vinicius has been at his brilliant best all day long, making a mockery of defenders for 83 minutes. That's all he'll play though, as Ancelotti bolsters midfield with the introduction of Dani Ceballos
Arnau Puigmal
Kaiky
81' Kaiky also comes off, and is replaced in defence by Arnau Puigmal.
Portillo
Íñigo Eguaras
81' Despite the turnaround, Eguaras has been awesome in the middle for Almeria, and comes off now for Francisco Portillo.
79' Alaba's in the thick of the action again, crossing for Benzema who wins a corner despite a relatively poor touch by his standards.
77' The players head for another cooling break, including Alaba, which is odd given how cool he must be feeling after scoring that beauty with his first touch!
D. Alaba
Goal
75' GOOOOAAALLLL!!!! WHAT A STRIKE!!! And what an introduction!!! Alaba steps up as casually as you like, with his very first touch, to smash the free-kick straight into the top corner to make it 2-1 to the champions! What a free-kick, and for the first time in this game Martinez had no answer to that one!
D. Alaba
F. Mendy
74' Mendy's next off for Real, and David Alaba comes on for the last quarter of an hour.
73' An inside ball from Vazquez to Modric sees the veteran midfielder caught and felled by Ely, giving Real a fantastic opportunity from this close-range free-kick.
José Carlos Lazo
L. Ramazani
71' Goalscorer Ramazani also comes off following a fantastic showing for the hosts, and he's replaced by Jose Carlos Lazo.
Dyego Sousa
U. Sadiq
71' Sadiq's been a brilliant foil for Ramazani in Almeria's two-pronged attack, but he comes off now for Portugal international Dyego Sousa.
69' Modric's inside ball to Benzema sees the Frenchman rush a shot, but it's blocked behind by Kaiky for another Madrid corner, their 13th of the game.
68' Real Madrid scored the most goals (nine) and attempted the most shots (67) after high turnovers of any side in La Liga last season. Coincidentally, Almeria were also the leading team in both categories in the Segunda Division last term (11 goals and 64 shots).
Curro Sánchez
Yellow Card
66' Vinicius is up to his tricks again and beats Curro with ease, but the substitute gets into a tangle with him and is penalised, receiving a yellow card from the referee.
66' Modric has another go from the edge of the box, but this effort is deflected skyward and Martinez can gather the loose ball.
65' A good ball over the top from Eguaras puts Ramazani into space once more, but the Real defence is wiser this time and Nacho steps in to make a brilliant interception.
63' SAVED!!! Vazquez is in space but cuts the ball back to Kroos. He assesses his options, and chooses to shoot, with his dipping effort drawing a save from Martinez in the far corner!
62' Benzema has now been involved in 10 goals in eight games against Almeria in La Liga (four goals and six assists), scoring or assisting in each of his last four games in the Andalusian city.
K. Benzema
Assist
61' Benzema could've gone for glory there to open Real's account for the fifth time in 10 seasons, but unselfishly set up his team-mate to finish and draw his side level in this exciting contest.
Lucas Vázquez
Goal
61' GOOOAAALLL!!! There it is!!! Real finally get their breakthrough in scrappy fashion as Vinicius races through, drawing a save from Martinez! It skews back to Benzema, who finds Vazquez in space, and the right-back stabs the ball home from 10 yards to lock us up at 1-1! You wondered if a goal would ever come, but now it has, Real will look to up the ante even further and turn one potential point into three.
60' Vinicius is crowded out on the byline and cuts the ball back to Modric, who has a pop from the edge of the box but skies his effort woefully.
E. Hazard
A. Tchouaméni
58' Tchouameni's league debut for Real comes to an end, and he's replaced by a fellow big-money signing of summers past in Eden Hazard.
58' Vazquez cuts inside before feeding Valverde to his right, and he crosses for Benzema. It's a weak shot from the Madrid skipper, that Martinez easily holds, but the flag's up against Benzema regardless of the outcome.
Curro Sánchez
L. Robertone
57' Almeria make their first change of the match, bringing off Robertone for Curro Sanchez in midfield.
55' SAVED!!! Good one-touch play from Kroos and Vinicius sees the latter put Benzema through on goal, but his low, left-footed shot across goal is once again saved by Martinez! What a game the Almeria keeper is having!
54' Ramazani takes on Vazquez and cuts inside him to shoot, but his well-hit effort is caught and held by Courtois!
53' SAVED!!! Sadiq is put in behind once again, barging Nacho over on his way through, and he draws another good save from Courtois with a dinked shot, before play is brought back for the foul!
52' SAVED!!! Sadiq somehow evades four defenders despite a loose touch and races into the box, firing a low shot across goal that Courtois has to parry away!
52' SAVED!!! Vinicius beats ample defenders once again before finding Benzema, who floats a cross over the top. It beats everyone, but not Valverde, who arrives at the back post to hammer a shot towards goal, but again Martinez holds the stinging effort!
50' WIDE!!! Eguaras picks the ball up in space and tries his luck from 35 yards, firing a good effort that curls away from goal just at the wrong moment and flies just wide of Courtois' right post!
49' After good skill from Eguaras sparks an Almeria counter-attack, it comes to Ramazani down the left, and the goalscorer races into the box, but is dispossesed by Rudiger just as he's about to pull the trigger!
47' WIDE!!! Vinicius curls a cross towards the back post, which almost catches Martinez out as it sails just wide!
46' Kroos blasts an effort from range that Martinez easily parries, but it's put behind for a corner via a rushed Chumi clearance.
46' Real get us back underway for the second half, in which they've got a lot to do!
L. Modrić
E. Camavinga
46' Camavinga's off in Real's only half-time change, with Ancelotti hopeful that Luka Modric's introduction will help his side be more clinical in the second stanza.
The players are back on the pitch for the second half, and can Real finally breach the hosts' defence to turn this game around?
Valverde and Martinez have been having a hell of a battle so far, with the Real midfielder having three good efforts matched by three excellent saves from the Almeria keeper! He's also completed three key passes, as well as winning all of his duels and having three touches in the box. Real's dominance, of everything but the scoreline, is reflected by shots alone, with Los Blancos having 17 to Almeria's two.
Well, who saw that coming! That early Ramazani goal sees Almeria take the slenderest of slender 1-0 leads into the break, after witholding attack after attack from the champions! Real have absolutely peppered the hosts' goal in that first half, but with Martinez playing a blinder between the sticks, they're still goalless and behind, and need to find that extra level of quality if they're to rescue this match!
45' + 4' HALF-TIME: ALMERIA 1-0 REAL MADRID.
45' + 3' Benzema has scored Real Madrid's first goal in four of the last nine La Liga seasons (2014, 2015, 2020 and 2022), making him the player who has scored Real Madrid's first goal in a league season the most times in the 21st century, ahead of Raul and Gareth Bale with three each.
45' + 1' We're into four minutes of added time at the end of this first half.
45' Mendy gets around Chumi down the left and squares the ball back for Benzema, but Ely arrives to hoof it clear for the home side!
43' BALL IN THE NET!!! Real finally have their goal - but it won't count! Kroos does brilliantly to evade two tackles before perfectly weighting a cross to the back post. Vazquez arrives there to smash it home on the volley, but the flag's up against him and the goal will not stand!
42' Camavinga brings the ball down on the edge of the box and tries a shot, but it's blocked and flies skyward off Babic's back!
U. Sadiq
Yellow Card
40' Sadiq is also shown a yellow card, for an earlier forceful challenge on Nacho that the referee played advantage on.
E. Camavinga
Yellow Card
40' Almeria head a corner clear and Ramazani races down the left. He's cynically dragged back by Camavinga, who is penalised and booked, and the Madrid midifelder can have absolutely no complaints!
40' SAVED!!! Kroos' corner is met by Rudiger at the far post, who heads goalwards only to be met by a fantastic diving save from Martinez! Real have another chance, but it's cleared by Almeria, whose goalkeeper is in top form!
39' Vinicius has it down the left again, dribbling into the box and nutmegging Kaiky before Chumi slides in to put the ball behind for another corner!
37' SAVED!!! A beauty of a throughball from Kroos has Vinicius racing onto it, and he surges into the box, going one-on-one with the goalkeeper, but Martinez stands his ground and parries the close range shot behind!
36' A fast Almeria break is interuppted by a poor touch off Costa, but the hosts recover and Robertone crosses from the byline, but Courtois catches it with several Rojiblancos shirts lying in wait.
34' A good ball forward from deep by Rudiger picks out Benzema in the box, but a poor first touch from the striker allows Martinez to gather possession.
32' An Almeria throw-in resumes proceedings, with less than 15 minutes to go until half-time.
31' The players head to the sideline for the obligatory cooling break, as a first half-hour of pulsating action comes to a momentary halt!
30' Robertone catches Vinicius late and sends the winger flying, warranting a free-kick in Madrid's favour.
28' SAVED!!! Kroos swings a cross into the box, where Benzema meets it at the far post. His header is straight at Martinez though, and the goalkeeper holds it!
27' It's been one hell of a battle between Sadiq and Rudiger so far, and the two clatter into each other once again, leaving both players on the ground in a heap.
26' Vinicius curls a low cross towards Benzema's feet, but Kaiky slides in with a superb tackle to hook the ball away from danger.
24' Relentless pressing from Almeria's forward line has Real penned into their own 18-yard box, but a touch off Ramazani sends the ball out for a goal kick, relieving the pressure.
23' Mendy attempts to put Vinicius into space down the byline, but the Madrid winger is flagged for offside.
22' Almeria have won just one of their 12 games against Real Madrid in La Liga, losing nine of these bouts. They’ve conceded more goals against Los Blancos, 38, than against any other team in the top-flight.
20' Kroos' corner isn't met properly by anyone and falls to Benzema, who fires a half-volley into the face of Babic, and the ball goes behind for a corner!
18' Sadiq's down inside Real's half following a mid-air clash with Rudiger, but after getting some treatment, the Almeria striker will play on.
16' SAVED!!! Mendy's outswinging corner is headed away by Sadiq. It falls to Valverde, who has another venomous shot from the edge of the area but Martinez is equal to it once more and parries the ball away!
14' Almeria have lost their opening La Liga game just once in their six last seasons; a 3-2 loss to Villarreal in August 2013. Meanwhile, Real Madrid haven’t lost an opening league game since a 2-1 loss against Deportivo de La Coruna in August 2008.
13' OVER!!! The hosts break at speed once again after winning the ball high up the pitch. Sadiq surges forward and has a go from distance, and it very nearly finds the top corner before going over!
11' BLOCKED! Kroos bends a cross into the danger area, and after Camavinga misses the ball with an attempted bicycle kick, Rudiger picks it up and tries a shot, but it's blocked behind for another corner!
9' OVER!!! A fast break down the left sees Vinicius lay the ball on a plate for Benzema to score, but the Madrid captain can only put it over the bar from just yards out! He's buried many more difficult chances than that one!
9' SAVED!!! From the corner, Madrid work the ball short into the box, and Valverde has another go, on his left foot this time, which is held low by the goalkeeper!
8' SAVED!!! Real hit straight back, with Camavinga freeing up Valverde in the box, and the Uruguayan smashing a near-post effort which is tipped over by a flying Martinez!
Íñigo Eguaras
Assist
6' What a ball from Eguaras, which put world-class defenders like Rudiger in no man's land and allowed Ramazani to surge away and score for the hosts!
L. Ramazani
Goal
6' GOOOOAAAAAALLLLL!!!! That wasn't in the script!!!! A delightful first-time pass from the outside of Eguaras' boot sees Ramazani race clear of the defence, bring the ball down and smash it beyond Courtois into the bottom corner!!! A fantastic first goal back in the top flight sees Almeria go 1-0 up against the champions, and Ramazani's acrobatic celebration was more than fitting!
6' Mendy finds Vinicius on the near touchline, but a rare poor touch from the Brazilian sees him put the ball over the sideline.
4' Tchouameni tees up Vazquez to have a go from 25 yards, and he does so, but can only drag his low shot wide of the target!
4' Real Madrid have won each of their last two visits to Almeria in La Liga under Carlo Ancelotti, scoring nine goals in the process.
2' Ramazani dribbles forward with purpose and feeds Chumi out wide, but he can only float a poor cross straight into Courtois' gloves.
1' Sadiq runs in behind Rudiger and is picked out in space, but he's flagged for offside despite being at least a yard on!
1' Sadiq kicks off for Almeria, and gets these two sides' seasons underway!
The teams are out on the pitch, and we're almost ready for kick-off here!
Real’s team also features new arrivals, with league debuts for Antonio Rudiger and Aurelien Tchouameni in the centres of defence and midfield respectively. They’ll frequently be looking to play in the ever-lethal Vinicius Junior and Karim Benzema, who are joined in the front three by Federico Valverde from the right.
There’s several new faces in the Almeria XI, which is captained by Srdjan Babic, signed this summer from Red Star Belgrade. He’ll form one part of a five-man backline, which also features Brazilian defender Kaiky, who has arrived from Santos.
REAL MADRID SUBS: Andriy Lunin, Luis Lopez, Eder Militao, David Alaba, Jesus Vallejo, Eden Hazard, Luka Modric, Marco Asensio, Casemiro, Alvaro Odriozola, Dani Ceballos, Mariano Diaz.
REAL MADRID (4-3-3): Thibaut Courtois; Lucas Vazquez, Antonio Rudiger, Nacho Fernandez, Ferland Mendy; Eduardo Camavinga, Aurelien Tchouameni, Toni Kroos; Federico Valverde, Karim Benzema, Vinicius Junior.
ALMERIA SUBS: Diego Fuoli, Francisco Portillo, Curro, Dyego Sousa, Arvin Appiah, Jose Carlos Lazo, Arnau Puigmal, Alex Centelles, Carlos Mosquero.
ALMERIA (5-3-2): Fernando Martinez; Chumi, Kaiky, Rodrigo Ely, Srdjan Babic, Sergio Akieme; Samuel Costa, Inigo Eguaras, Lucas Robertone; Largie Ramazani, Umar Sadiq.
As well as winning a treble of league, Champions League, and the Supercopa de Espana in 2021-22, Real have already started the new season with some silverware, defeating Eintracht Frankfurt 2-0 in Helsinki to claim the UEFA Super Cup.
It’s a battle of the respective league winners, with Segunda Division champions Almeria taking on the side that won Spain’s top-flight by a massive 13 points last season.
Hello, and welcome to this fixture on the opening weekend of the 2022-23 La Liga season, as Almeria welcome defending champions Real Madrid to the Power Horse Stadium.