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Benzema brace inspires win in Vigo

MATCH REPORT. 20/03/2021. Alberto Navarro. Photographer: Antonio Villalba y Helios de la Rubia

Two goals from the striker and another from Asensio, assisted by the Frenchman, secured the three points against Celta ahead of the international break.

Real Madrid clinched another precious three points in the title race at the Balaídos stadium to extend their unbeaten run to ten games. Karim Benzema put on yet another dazzling display to help his side secure the spoils. The Frenchman, who has scored eight goals in the last six games, broke the deadlock in the 20th minute when he controlled a through ball by Toni Kroos and curled a low shot past the keeper. Ten minutes later the striker extended Madrid’s lead when he placed the ball into the bottom corner with his left foot.
 
Kroos was also instrumental in the first half hour of play – the German set up the first goal and won the ball back in attack for the second. The pair linked up well to set the Whites on course for victory, after they had dominated the play, moving the ball around well and pressing Celta high up. But the hosts had a lifeline on 40’ when Denis Suárez curled in a free-kick which was headed home by Santi Mina. The game opened up in the second half as the hosts applied the pressure and almost got their reward on 62’. Aspas hit a low strike from the edge of the area but Thibaut Courtois did well to push the ball away.

Real Madrid's reply came four minutes later after a great run and individual skill from Vinicius Jr. but he was unable to pick out a teammate in the area. Zidane brought on Asensio in place of Toni Kroos in the 71st minute and Benzema had a chance to get his third goal seven minutes later. He nicked the ball from Araújo, but Iván Villar came out on top in the one-on-one. The game was end-to-end and in the 82nd minute Celta had a chance to draw level through an Aspas free-kick from the edge of the area, but Casemiro, in the wall, flicked the ball on to the woodwork.
 
Asensio sealed the win
It was Celta's last chance against a Real Madrid side who held onto their first-half lead and went on to score a third in stoppage time thanks to Asensio, who was on target again after his goal against Atalanta. The assist came from Benzema, who rounded off a great performance.

TEN GAMES UNBEATEN

Real Madrid are now unbeaten in the last 10 games, winning eight of them. During the run, they've beaten Atalanta twice, Huesca, Getafe, Valencia, Valladolid, Elche and Celta. The Whites have also drawn with Real Sociedad and Atlético.

MADRID RETURN TO LALIGA ACTION ON 3 APRIL

Real Madrid will now have a two-week rest due to the international break. Zidane's side next face Éibar on 3 April at the Alfredo Di Stéfano stadium on matchday 29 of LaLiga (4.15pm CET).

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The referee

Melero López (Andalusian Committee), assisted by Martínez Serrato and Alcoba Rodríguez. Guzmán Mansilla was the fourth official, whilst Cuadra Fernandez (Balearic Committee) was the VAR referee.

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