La Liga: Benzema Fires Real Madrid 15 Points Clear
Karim Benzema’s stoppage-time winner earned Real Madrid a come-from-behind 3-2 victory against Sevilla in their top of the table La Liga clash, sending the visitor 15 points clear at the Estadio R. Sanchez Pizjuan in Spain.
The hosts started with Manchester United loanee Anthony Martial upfront, supported by Erik Lamela and Jesus Corona on the flanks. The in-form Real Madrid featured a front-three of Benzema, Vinicius Jr. and Federico Valverde in attack as they looked to extend their lead at the top.
Sevilla opened the scoring when midfielder Ivan Rakitic took advantage of Eder Militao’s bizarre decision to jump out of the wall as he saw his free-kick sail into goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois’ bottom corner.
Four minutes later, Sevilla doubled the lead as another bit of poor defending from Militao allowed Tecatito Corona to race beyond the visiting defence and latch onto Marcos Acuna’s pass. Corona’s rebounded shot then fell perfectly for Erik Lamela, who fired the ball into an empty net.
Sevilla’s resilient defence managed to keep the league leaders out as the referee blew the half time whistle with the hosts in front.
In the second half, substitute Rodrygo latched onto Dani Carvajal’s cutback after good movement in the box and fired the ball into the roof of the net five minutes after his introduction.
Vinicious Jr. thought he had equalised for Madrid. However, the referee cancelled the goal after an apparent handball by the Brazilian when controlling the ball before his shot.
With eight minutes remaining, Carvajal again provided an inch-perfect cutback after winning the ball back high up the pitch, setting up substitute Nacho Fernandez to fire home with his first touch seconds after coming onto the field.
The visitors continued to press for the winner as they had carved open the entire Sevilla defence in spectacular fashion.
French international Benzema continued his rich goal scoring form as he silenced the Sevilla fans in the stadium after another brilliant piece of play. Benzema showed great composure in the box, controlling Rodrygo’s cutback, taking a couple of touches, and smashed the ball past goalkeeper Bono to send the Madrid fans into a frenzy.
The goal continued Benzema’s excellent form this season and added to his recent match-winning heroics in all competitions. The victory sent Carlo Ancelotti’s men 15 points clear at the top of the La Liga table and effectively sealed the title race.
Sevilla, who would have gone second with a win and cut the gap at the top to nine points, remain third, level on 60 points with second-placed Barcelona and Atletico Madrid in fourth.
Barcelona have two games in hand on Real Madrid but it would still take an incredible collapse from Carlo Ancelotti’s side to be caught in the closing stages.
HIGHLIGHTS: #SevillaFCRealMadrid 2-3
— LaLiga English (@LaLigaEN) April 17, 2022
La Liga results
Granada 1-4 Levante
Atletico Madrid 2-1 Espanyol
Athletic Bilbao 0-2 Celta Vigo
Sevilla 2-3 Real Madrid.
Chidi Nwoke/La Liga.