Real Madrid reversed their failure against their host Celta Vigo twice by winning 5-2 with a hat-trick from French striker Karim Benzema and regaining the lead of the Spanish football league on Sunday at the end of the fourth stage.
Real brought his score to 10 points, ahead of Valencia and Atletico Madrid, champions last season.
Real Madrid played their first match at the “Santiago Bernabeu” stadium 560 days ago, precisely from March 1, 2020, due to the renovations that the historic stadium in the center of the Spanish capital is undergoing.
Real Madrid had been playing their matches for a year and a half in the nearby “Alfredo Di Stefano” stadium.
The cost of renovating the stadium will amount to 575 million euros, with works to be definitively completed in January 2023.
Celta surprised the hosts by opening the scoring with Santa Mina, who worked his way between Nacho and Brazilian Casemiro before scoring against Belgian goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois after 4 minutes.
Real Madrid responded with a goal from Benzema, who hit a ball from Uruguayan midfielder Federico Valverde to follow the ball in net (24).
However, the royal team did not enjoy his progress for long, because Franco Servi led again in Celta Vigo advantage after a ball with the heel hit the post and returned to him to follow him in net (31).
Benzema scored a goal that the referee did not consider for offside (39).
A minute after the start of the second half, Benzema managed to equalize with his head, bringing his score to 4 goals in 4 matches in this season in the local league. He also increased his score in the ranks of Real Madrid to 196 goals in the Spanish league.
Benzema was the owner of the decisive pass that came from Brazilian Vinicius Junior’s third goal, who also scored his fourth goal in this season.
The new young French midfielder, Eduardo Camavinga, 18, joined Real Madrid for the first time since moving to him from Rennes, and was in able to add the fourth goal when Croatian Luka Modric hit a powerful ball that Celta goalkeeper Matias Detoro failed to catch, so he was ready for the newcomer to follow on the inside.nets (72).
Benzema completes the hat-trick on a penalty awarded after blocking Vinicius Junior in area.
This is Benzema’s first triple since April 2019.
Hard victory for Atletico Madrid
In turn, last season’s champion Atletico Madrid beat his host Espanyol 2-1 at the last gasp.
French striker Antoine Griezmann, who returned to Atletico after two seasons at Barcelona, participated in front line alongside Uruguayan veteran Luis Soares.
Atletico did nothing in the first half, which saw Espanyol usher in the scoring with a header from Raul de Thomas on Slovenian goalkeeper Jan Oblak.
And faced with the lackluster offer, the Argentine coach Diego Simeone did not hesitate to make three substitutions in only once at the beginning of the second half by killing compatriot Angel Correa, Mario Hermoso and the English Kieran Trippier, and instead inserted the French Jeffrey Gundogbia and Thomas Lemar, in addition to the Brazilian Renan Lodi.
He then pulled out his main strikers mid-second and replaced them with Portuguese Joao Felix and Brazilian Mateus Konya, recently transferred from Hertha Berlin, after contributing to his country’s victory in Olympic gold in Tokyo.
Atletico managed to equalize first thanks to Belgian winger Yannick Carrasco with a creeping left (79), before Lemar scored the deadly winning goal in the ninth minute of added time with a heel pass from Carrasco.
“My team didn’t do well in the first half,” Simeone said after the match.
“I think the key to the victory was the great work done by the five substitutes, and that means we have two players in bench that are no less important than the owners “.
Interestingly, Atletico Madrid kick off their Champions League campaign on Wednesday when they host Porto in strong second-group competitions, which also includes Liverpool and AC Milan.
Valencia continued their strong start in this season and defeated his host Osasuna 4-1.
The victory is the third for Valencia against a draw, so equals the points with Atletico and Real with 10 points.
Osasuna were the first to score with Yun Moncaiola (8), but Uruguayan Maximiliano Gomes equalized (26), before his team scored 3 goals in the second half with Aridani Hernandez (50 fouls by his team) , the Portuguese Goncalo Guedes (55) and the Paraguayan Omar Al-Deriti (73).
Real Sociedad took their third victory in this season, after defeating Cadiz with two goals from his top scorer, Michael Oyarsabal (71 and 84 from a penalty).
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