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Karim Benzema Brace Helps Real Madrid Down Celta and Close in on Atletico in La Liga

Karim Benzema scored twice as Real Madrid held on for a 3-1 victory over Celta Vigo on Saturday, decreasing the hole to 3 factors behind La Liga leaders Atletico Madrid. Benzema continued his scintillating kind at Balaidos by making it 10 objectives in 10 video games, in the identical week Zinedine Zidane admitted a Madrid return might be “possible” for Cristiano Ronaldo this summer season.

Celta pulled one again via Santi Mina and made Madrid uncomfortable within the second half, with Iago Aspas’s free-kick hitting the submit, just for Benzema to tee up Marco Asensio for a 3rd in injury-time.

The end result will increase the strain on Atletico forward of their sport in hand at dwelling to Alaves on Sunday whereas Madrid climb to second, no less than till third-placed Barcelona play Real Sociedad, additionally on Sunday.

Talk of Ronaldo coming again to Madrid makes gentle of Benzema’s very good showings in current weeks, together with his 5 objectives in Madrid’s final three league video games incomes a vital draw away at Atletico, victory over Elche and now a win away at Celta.

The Frenchman’s kind seems to be Madrid’s finest probability of catching Atleti, who nonetheless have the benefit by way of factors however look more and more susceptible to the momentum of their nearest rivals.

Benzema had two early probabilities, the primary after Vinicius Junior skipped round Celta goalkeeper Ivan Villar and the second when the ball spilled unfastened within the space, however each photographs have been blocked.

His two objectives each owed so much to Toni Kroos, who glided previous three Celta shirts on the sting of the realm within the 20th minute earlier than feeding Benzema, who swivelled and shot crisply into the far nook.

Kroos’ incision arrange the primary and his persistence created the second 10 minutes later, as he robbed Renato Tapia and Benzema profited by curling in together with his left foot.

Celta grew stronger in the direction of the tip of the half, Mina flicking large after which heading in after being left utterly unmarked from a free-kick, conceded by Kroos.

Madrid misplaced some management within the second half and wanted Thibaut Courtois to avoid wasting an Aspas header, even when Vinicius and Benzema might need prolonged the benefit on the counter-attack.

Aspas’ free-kick late on might need flown in had the ball not grazed Casemiro’s fringe on its means onto the submit however Madrid breathed a sigh of aid after which celebrated, Asensio tapping in Benzema’s cross in injury-time.

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