Monday , September 24 2018

Real stay top with Leganes victory

Real Madrid’s Marco Asensio vies for the ball with Leganes’ Martin Mantovani (right), during a Spanish La Liga soccer match between Leganes and Real Madrid at the Butarque Stadium in Madrid, on April 5. (AP)

BARCELONA, April 6, (RTRS): Real Madrid beat Leganes 4-2 on Wednesday despite resting key players including Cristiano Ronaldo and Gareth Bale as goals from Alvaro Morata and James Rodriguez helped them stay top of La Liga after Barcelona cruised to a 3-0 win over Sevilla.

Rodriguez set them on the way to victory with an early goal before Morata scored twice in five minutes to put Real 3-0 up. But Leganes scored twice in quick succession through Gabriel Appelt Pires and Luciano to cut the deficit to 3-2 at halftime. An own goal by Leganes defender Martin Mantovani just after the break stretched Real’s lead and they kept the hosts at arm’s length for the remainder of game.

The win saw Real recapture top spot from Barcelona, who had provisionally led the standings after beating Sevilla with two goals from Lionel Messi after the opener from Luis Suarez. “It was a bit of a strange game,” said Real coach Zinedine Zidane. “We started very well and scored three goals and then we got ourselves into trouble by conceding those two goals. In the end we controlled the second half better by getting the extra goal and we got the three points.”

The Frenchman cursed his side for switching off in the first half and briefly allowing Leganes back into the game. “We can’t afford to keep doing it, conceding twice (in four minutes) is a big deal. That’s why we always need to be looking to improve. It’s the great thing about football, you never know what’s going to happen.” Real’s exciting youngster Marco Asensio created the first goal, robbing a Leganes player around the halfway line to embark on a bursting run past three more players before squaring the ball for James to tap in from close range.

Morata got the first of his two goals three minutes later by arriving at the far post to glance the ball in as Leganes failed to clear a corner and then ran onto a pass from Mateo Kovacic to produce a sweeping finish high into the net in the 23rd

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