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Isma López
5 - 1
K. Benzema
5 - 0
Cristiano Ronaldo
Dani Carvajal
4 - 0
K. Benzema
G. Bale
3 - 0
Cristiano Ronaldo
K. Benzema
2 - 0
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Live table
Pos Team P W D L F A +/- PTS Form
1 Barcelona BAR Barcelona 38 29 4 5 112 29 +83 91 W W W W W
2 Real Madrid RMA Real Madrid 38 28 6 4 110 34 +76 90 W W W W W
3 Atlético Madrid ATM Atlético Madrid 38 28 4 6 63 18 +45 88 W L W W W
4 Villarreal VIL Villarreal 38 18 10 10 44 35 +9 64 L L W D L
5 Athletic Club ATH Athletic Club 38 18 8 12 58 45 +13 62 W D W D L
6 Celta de Vigo CEL Celta de Vigo 38 17 9 12 51 59 -8 60 L W L W D
7 Sevilla SEV Sevilla 38 14 10 14 51 50 +1 52 L L L W L
8 Málaga MAL Málaga 38 12 12 14 38 35 +3 48 W L W L D
9 Real Sociedad RSO Real Sociedad 38 13 9 16 45 48 -3 48 W W L D L
10 Real Betis BET Real Betis 38 11 12 15 34 52 -18 45 W D L L W
11 Las Palmas LPM Las Palmas 38 12 8 18 45 53 -8 44 L D L W L
12 Valencia VAL Valencia 38 11 11 16 46 48 -2 44 L L L D W
13 Eibar EIB Eibar 38 11 10 17 49 61 -12 43 L D L D L
14 Espanyol ESP Espanyol 38 12 7 19 40 74 -34 43 W L W L D
15 Deportivo La Coruña DEP Deportivo La Coruña 38 8 18 12 45 61 -16 42 L W L D L
16 Granada GRA Granada 38 10 9 19 46 69 -23 39 L W W L W
17 Sporting Gijón SPO Sporting Gijón 38 10 9 19 40 62 -22 39 W D W L W
18 Rayo Vallecano RAY Rayo Vallecano 38 9 11 18 52 73 -21 38 W L L L D
19 Getafe GET Getafe 38 9 9 20 37 67 -30 36 L D W D W
20 Levante LEV Levante 38 8 8 22 37 70 -33 32 L W L D L


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Full time at Santiago Bernabeu. Real Madrid put pressure on Atletico Madrid and Barcelona at the top of the league after a comprehensive 5-1 win over lowly Sporting Gijon in the Spanish Primera Division. The damage was done in the first half as Ronaldo and Benzema both got two after Bale had opened the scoring with the header. The second period was a different story as the visitors clawed a goal back through Isma, with Benzema and Bale also going off injured for Los Blancos, which will certainly be a worry for Zinedine Zidane. Thanks for joining us - see you next time!
Like the first period, there shouldn't be too much injury time signaled by the ref as the second half has pretty much been free flowing, even if we haven't seen too many goals flying in. It actually looks like we are only getting two minutes.
The stadium is rather subdued at the moment as both sets of fans are probably ready for the final whistle. The Sporting fans have wanted the game to finish since pretty much the end of the first half, while the Santiago Bernabeu faithful have seemed bored in the second period, seemingly succumbing to the fact they are not going to witness a flurry of goals in the last portion of the match.
That's poor from Jony. Sporting move possession once again up the park and are eventually awarded a corner kick, which is curled to the edge of the box, where the winger is standing unmarked. He attempts to get the strike away with a volley, but fluffs his lines completely and his strike nearly goes out for a throw in.
Rachid swings a corner deep to the back post and Pepe is on hand to clear away with a commanding header. Kovacic steps in to claim the loose ball before attempting to find the run up top from Jese in behind the Sporting defence, but the substitute loses the areal battle to Luis, who rises high to bullet a header back into the Madrid half.
Cases and Ronaldo clash again but it is a slightly more professional altercation between the two now as the Madrid man hounds his opponent in front of the Sporting defence, attempting to steal possession in a dangerous area. In the end, the former comes out the stronger and shakes off the marking to move ahead with the ball through into the centre circle.
Los Blancos are just professionally seeing this game out now with a period of sustained possession in the middle of the park, in an attempt to tire Sporting even more than they already are. The Santiago Bernabeu faithful would have been hoping for more goals after the break, but Cuellar has not had to contend with much in the past 30 minutes or so of the game.
Jese and James have been particularly disappointing since coming off the bench as they should be striving to impress Zidane enough to get in the starting line-up for the next game, especially with the injury fate of Bale and Benzema uncertain at this point. The duo just haven't seen too much of the ball after entering the action.
Ronaldo is the only member of the Real Madrid front three who started the match who still features in the game at the moment, with the other two leaving with injury. This means the Portuguese still has the opportunity to claim his hat-trick, and goes for it this time with a lashed strike on goal from 25 yards with his left foot, but it is relatively routine for Cuellar in the end.
A. Sanabria
Miguel Guerrero
Third and final change from Fernandez now and it sees Guerrero, who has been disappointing up top for the visitors, make way for Sporting's top goalscorer this season, Antonio Sanabria. Let's see if he can make an impact.
Just under 20 minutes to go at Santiago Bernabeu and dare I say that the Real Madrid fans might not be too happy with their side in this second half. They have took their foot off the gas significantly, and although their flow has been disturbed by the injuries to Bale and Benzema, they should at least be testing Cuellar between the sticks the way they did in the opening 45.
Isma has displayed plenty of attacking ambition since the break and continually manages to drive down the right wing in an attempt to provide width for the visitors. This time, he makes a late run to the back post to try and latch on to a loose ball, but before he can claim possession, Marcelo comes in with an excellent challenge to clear behind for a throw in.
You have to hand it to Sporting, as they have been vastly improved in their performance since the break, which is no doubt due to the tutelage of Fernandez at the break. It was mentioned previously that they may have been treating the scoreline as 0-0 at half time, and it appears that is the case as their is renewed vigour in their pressing and accuracy in the passing.
Really unlucky from N'Di! The substitute, who entered the action at the break, displays an impressive feat of strength to bounce off the challenge of Varane before shifting the ball on to his right foot on the edge of the box to eventually get the shot away. In the end, though, the Frenchman did just enough to put him off which meant the strike is screwed just wide.
M. Kovačić
K. Benzema
Despite the scoreline, it has not been all smiles for Real Madrid this afternoon as, after previously losing Bale to injury, they see yet another one of their stay players leave the pitch with a problem. This time it is Benzema, and he will be replaced by Mateo Kovacic.
Very positive work from Menendez as he bursts into the Madrid box before cleverly finding Isma!
Isma López
GOOOOOOOOAAAAALLLLLLL FOR SPORTING! HOW ABOUT THAT FROM THE VISITORS?! Fernandez's men move forward in a sweeping counterattack and the ball eventually comes to Menendez, who displays composure to reverse a cross to the back post, where Isma fires into the bottom corner! Five-one!
R. Aït-Atmane
Sergio Álvarez
Sporting make a change too as Sergio Alvarez makes way for Rachid Ait-Atmane.
J. Rodríguez
Second change of the match from Zidane and it is an expected one with the scoreline what is it. Coming off is the impressive Isco and he will be replaced by James Rodriguez, who will be eager to impress and reclaim his place in the team from the Spaniard.
UNLUCKY FROM JONY! The Sporting winger has probably been his side's brightest player this afternoon, and attempts to take it to the Madrid defence with another penetrating run into the final third. He eventually makes his way to the edge of the box and rifles a strike at goal, but unluckily for him, it flashes just the wrong side of the left-hand post.
L. Modrić
Yellow Card
Another yellow card brandished by the referee now and it is Modric who goes into the book for a poor challenge on Cases a few yards inside the Sporting box. Again, completely needless booking for the Croatian; the Madrid players simply do not need to get involved in such incidents - they are 5-0 up!
Lora needlessly takes out Ronaldo a few yards in from the touchline on the left wing and Madrid get the free kick. Kroos stands over it and whips a dangerous looking cross to the area inside the box near the penalty spot, but Cuellar does well in the end to usher bodies out the way to claim possession out of the air. Good goalkeeping, there.
MISCUE FROM RONALDO! The former Manchester United attacker, who continues to search for his hat-trick, runs in behind the defence after a neat pass from Benzema, but the resulting strike on goal is skewed disappointingly wide! It seemed like he just didn't have his bearings there, as he had time to take the touch!
Ronaldo is a very lucky man here as he clearly kicks out at Cases in the middle of the park after an altercation between the two. That could easily have been a yellow or even a red, but the referee waves play on despite having a terrific view of the incident. Odd decision indeed!
Miguel Guerrero
Yellow Card
First yellow card of the match and the signs aren't good for Sporting as they appearing to be losing their discipline out there. The guilty party this time is Guerreo, who goes into the book for a cynical and needless hack at Varane in the Madrid half after the Frenchman had already cleared the ball.
It will be interesting to see Sporting's mindset for this second period as it goes without saying that they are not going to get anything out of this match. However, Fernandez will likely have advised his charges to treat the half as if it was a fresh match at 0-0, that way they can hope to reclaim a little bit of pride. Madrid might have something to say about that, though...
D. N'Di
A. Halilović
Sporting make a change of their own as Halilovic makes way for Daniel N'Di. Not the best game to be entering the action at half-time - when you are 5-0 down.
G. Bale
A change to report at the break from Zidane as Bale is forced off what appears to be a small hamstring injury he picked up near the end of the first half. His replacement will be Jese, who will certainly be eager to join in on the goalscoring fun.
We are back under way at Santiago Bernabeu!
Half time at Santiago Bernabeu as the referee adds on barely any stoppage time. Real Madrid have blown away Sporting in the opening 45 minutes of this Liga clash, and currently lead 5-0 at the break, with Ronaldo and Benzema getting two a-piece after Bale opened the scoring with a glancing header. The visitors have just been demolished by the attacking players of Los Blancos, who seem as hungry as ever to tally up more goals! Sorry, Sporting, but there is another half to come shortly...
Unclear at this point as to how much added time will be signaled by the referee as it would almost be cruel to Sporting to play on the pitch any more than required for them, as they as on the end of an absolute hammering at the moment - and it is only halfway done!
A stunning assist from Isco as the former Malaga man completely takes out the Sporting defence with a lofted pass into the path of Benzema!
K. Benzema
GOOOOOOOAAAAAAAAAAAALLLL FOR REAL MADRID! THAT'S FIVE! Isco pops up in his favourite position between the opposition midfield and defence, and juggles the ball with a couple of lovely touches before lifting a delightful pass over for Benzema, who takes into stride before stabbing a strike past the oncoming Cuellar! FIVE-NIL!
Halilovic, who is of course on loan at Sporting from from Madrid's clasico rivals, Barcelona, picks up the ball around 25 yards out and looks to shift the ball on to the other foot in order to get a strike away, but ends up being commandingly dispossessed by the long leg of Varane, who continues to impress in the Spanish Primera Division.
GREAT SAVE FROM CUELLAR! Ronaldo breaks the offside trap and latches on to a neat pass from Modric into the left of the penalty area. He attempts to lift a strike over the oncoming Sporting keeper, who keeps himself big to make the solid block! Luckily for the Portuguese, the flag eventually goes up for offside anyway...
Marcelo, typically when playing at the Santiago Bernabeu, is featuring basically as an extra winger down the left wing for the Blancos and has went on a number of exciting, marauding runs to the byline. It is just unfortunate for him that most of Real Madrid's better play so far has came on the opposite flank on the right.
Fifteen minutes to go in the first half and Sporting really should be aiming to claw at least one goal back before the break, to give something even as small as that to think about during half-time. At the moment, Zidane is currently facing the easiest team talk of his line - more of the same, he will no doubt encourage!
Gareth Bale is playing some of his best football in a Real Madrid shirt at the moment and is going for his second goal of the game here with a free kick opportunity from around 30 yards out. The Welshman goes for it instead of Ronaldo, but it is disappointing as the strike goes high and wide into the stand, as Cuellar breathes a sigh of relief.
Where on earth has the opening 28 minutes or so has this game gone?! Time has absolutely flown by so far in this Spanish Primera Division clash and we have seen no less than four goals in the first third of the match. It is just unfortunate for Sporting that every one has been tallied up by a Real Madrid forward!
It should be five for Madrid! Ronaldo picks up possession a yard or so inside the box and goes searches for a quickfire hat-trick, attempting to find space to get the shot away. He eventually does so, but it is fortuitously blocked over the bar before Cuellar is forced into making the save!
SAVE FROM NAVAS! Jony, who has one of the only Sporting players with pass marks so far, cuts in from the flank once again and sends a fizzing strike aimed at the bottom corner, only to be foiled by the Madrid keeper, who somehow gets across goal to make the block with the tip of his glove! Superb work between the sticks there!
Menendez ventures into some space down the wing and then skips past a challenge before standing up a lovely cross deep to the back post. Guerrero attempts to get on the end of it, but Navas takes the pressure completely off his defence with a terrific claim out of the air after proactively coming off his line.
Sporting Gijon are in big trouble here. You need to feel a bit for Abelardo Fernandez in the dugout for the visitors because there isn't really much he can do at the moment to improve his team! They have been shocking at the back, but the result at the moment is also down to some blistering attacking play from Los Blancos!
Dani Carvajal
Superb from Carvajal as he gallops down the right before finding Ronaldo for his second goal!
Cristiano Ronaldo
GOOOOAAAAAAALLLLLLL FOR MADRID! THIS IS GETTING EMBARRASSING FOR SPORTING NOW! Carvajal has displayed tonnes of attacking ambition so far in the match and records an assist this time with a low cross into the edge of the six-yard box, where Ronaldo smashes home with a predatory finish! Four-nil!
The next few minutes in the match are so incredibly vital for Sporting. The match is basically beyond them now, but they can still at least strive to keep the scoreline remotely respectable, even with Madrid looking like scoring whenever they venture into the final third!
Well, I think we can all have a little moment to compose ourselves now after that was a breathless opening portion of the match! Sporting have massive, massive problems here as Real Madrid are clearly coming out to prove a point and entertain their home fans! This could easily be result ending in the double figures...
G. Bale
Bale is playing so superbly at the moment and has proved he can assist as well as score, with a fantastic cross for Benzema to smash home!
K. Benzema
GOOOAAAAAAAALLLLLL FOR REAL MADRID! A QUITE STUNNING START IN THIS LIGA MATCH! Carvajal drives down the right channel with pace before threading a pass into space for Bale, who subsequently clips a teasing cross to the back post. Benzema is on hand to find the net with a terrific bicycyle kick, meaning Madrid's front three have all scored, and we are only 12 minutes in! Three-nil!
K. Benzema
Benzema turns provided once again this season with a quite delightful pass into the feet of Ronaldo!
Cristiano Ronaldo
GOOOOOAAAALLL!! GOOOAAAALLLL FOR REAL MADRID! WHAT A START AT SANTIAGO BERNABEU! Benzema makes his way into the Sporting box and decides against going for the shot, instead opting to send a lovely pass into the feet of Ronaldo. The Ballon d'Or nominee then swivels sharply before sending a lashed strike into the top left corner! Two-nil! Sporting are sinking without a trace!
T. Kroos
A set-piece assist for Kroos here as the German curls a lovely cross to the front post for Bale from a corner kick!
G. Bale
GOOOOAAAAAAALLLLL FOR REAL MADRID! AN EARLY LEAD FOR LOS BLANCOS! Kroos stands over a corner kick deep down the right flank and then steps up to whip a wicked cross to the near post, where Bale rises high above Sergio to glance a header home! One-nil!
Jony attempts to take the game to Real Madrid in these opening stages with a driving run down the right wing before eventually darting into a dangerous position inside the opposition box. Before he can get a shot away, though, the retreating Modric is on hand to make the vital interception!
Bale, who scored a superb hat-trick in Madrid's previous game which was a 5-0 win over Deportivo, collects the ball deep down the right wing and typically cuts inside on his left foot before whipping a cross into the box, looking for Ronaldo. Luis is on hand to clear at the front post for Sporting, though.
We are under way at Santiago Bernabeu!
The teams are making their way to the pitch and we are almost ready for kick-off!
Sporting (4-2-3-1): Cuellar; Lora, Luis, Mere, Isma; Sergio, Cases; Jony, Halilovic, Menendez; Guerrero.
Real Madrid (4-3-3): Navas; Carvajal, Varane, Pepe, Marcelo; Kroos, Modric, Isco; Bale, Benzema, Ronaldo.
The stats don't point to anything other than a Real Madrid victory today. The capital club have lost just one of their last 13 league games against Sporting, and lost just one of their last 27 Liga games overall, which came against Barcelona in the Clasico. Los Blancos play before Atletico Madrid and Barcelona this afternoon, and will be hoping to record a comprehensive victory to apply some pressure on their title rivals.
Sporting are embroiled in a relegation battle this campaign and once again find themselves striving to avoid a return to the Segunda division. They have accumulated just 15 points from their opening 18 games and currently sit in 18th – two points away from safety. Abelardo Fernandez's men have lost seven out of their last eight league games, with the latest defeat coming at the hands of Villarreal in a 2-0 result at El Madrigal.
The match today has indeed been overshadowed by the fact that Madrid, as well as their city rivals, Atletico, have had a transfer ban imposed on them by FIFA for allegedly illegally transferring and registering players under the age of 18. Both teams will appeal the decision, claiming complete innocence, but as the ban will not come into affect until the summer, we may see quite a bit of buying and selling activity within the Spanish capital this month.
The World Cup winner couldn't really have had a better start to his tenure as head coach, as last week his side ran out emphatic 5-0 winners over Deportivo at home, with a Gareth Bale hat-trick and a double from Karim Benzema sealing the three points. However, Zidane will be aware of the fact that there will be much tougher tasks to come this campaign.
The manner of the performances have also been an issue, too, as former boss Rafa Benitez was accused from some quarters within the club of being pragmatic in his approach to games, with the attacking play not being as entertaining as the Santiago Bernabeu faithful are accustomed to. All of these factors resulted in the dismissal of the Spaniard, who was subsequently replaced by Castilla boss and former Real Madrid playing legend, Zinedine Zidane.
Los Blancos have endured a rather tumultuous first half of the season and currently find themselves 3rd in the table, four points behind leaders, Atletico Madrid. This doesn't sound particularly bad all in itself, but combine this with an embarrassing exit from the Copa del Rey for fielding an ineligble player, as well as comprehensive defeats against their title rivals, Atleti and Barcelona, and it isn't too rosy in the Spanish capital.
Good afternoon football fans! Welcome to LIVE coverage of the Spanish Primera Division encounter between Real Madrid and Sporting Gijon from Santiago Bernabeu!