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La Liga Review: Madrid pile pressure on Barca

Real Madrid kept the pressure on La Liga leaders Barcelona with a 5-1 thrashing of Getafe on Saturday.

Karim Benzema appeared unaffected by France snubbing him for Euro 2016 as he scored and provided two assists at Coliseum Alfonso Perez.

The 28-year-old produced a brilliant display to help Zinedine Zidane’s side follow up reaching the Champions League semi-finals in midweek by piling the pressure on Liga leaders Barcelona – who entertain Valencia on Sunday – by closing the gap at the top to one point.

After Cristiano Ronaldo had struck the upright, Benzema opened the scoring on the half-hour mark despite not making the cleanest of contact with an excellent delivery from James Rodriguez.

The former Lyon striker then played a one-two with Isco to enable the midfielder to add the second, and facilitated a rapid counter-attack for Gareth Bale to slot home the third before being replaced by Jese Rodriguez in the 67th minute.

Pablo Sarabia pulled one back for Getafe, but they were unable to avoid a 13th Liga match without a win in Juan Esnaider’s first game at the helm as James and Ronaldo both found the net in the closing stages to complete a seventh successive top-flight win for Madrid.

Celta Vigo stretched their unbeaten run to four games and stayed on track for Europa League qualification with a 1-1 draw at home to Real Betis.

After Alfred N’Diaye tapped in the easiest of openers for Betis, Pablo Hernandez rifled in a second-half equaliser as Celta stayed fifth – five points clear of seventh-placed Sevilla.

Sporting Gijon are a point adrift of safety after a 1-1 draw at Las Palmas and Eibar came from behind to beat Real Sociedad 2-1 in a Basque derby.

Sat 16 Apr, 2016
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