Real Madrid welcomed Real Madrid on Sunday night hoping they would be able to end the terrible record against he capital city side.
The Txuri-urdin have won just 24 of their prior 138 meetings with Real Madrid 18 of which came in La Liga. It has been 14 years since the Royals last beat the La Liga giants and the poor run continued with the Sunday’s defeat at Anoeta.
Real Sociedad were hoping that they would be able to exploit the fact Zinedine Zidane came to town without Portugal superstar Cristiano Ronaldo, who is still struggling with the knee injury he picked up in the EURO 2016 finals against France earlier this summer. Hosts’ hopes were compounded by the absences of Pepe and Luka Modric who were both ruled out for the match as well.
Los Blancos have however demonstrated the full extent of squad depth as Gareth Bale and Marco Asensio stepped up to the scene to get their team in front early on, setting the course towards a comfortable victory sealed by Gareth Bale in the dying moments of the game.
First period of the game between Real Sociedad and Real Madrid turned out to be a one-sided event with the visiting side dominating possession and displaying full control over the proceedings.
With five goal attempts compared to zero from Real Sociedad, Los Blancos never allowed the game to slip out of their hands.
It all started so well for Real Madrid as Welsh wizard netted with less than 90 second into the match.
Real Madrid switched play from left to right with Dani Carvajal sending a perfect cross inside the box for a perfect header from Gareth Bale.
Real Madrid youngster Marco Asensio doubled the lead shortly before the interval after Raphael Varane sent a perfect ball behind Real Sociedad defence to get Asensio one-on-one with Sociedad keeper. Asensio lobbed Geronimo Rulli with a composed and confident shot for his second goal in the second appearance for Real Madrid this season.
Zinedine Zidane’s decision to promote the youngster into the first-half proved to be a right one as the 20-year-old Spanish international has already demonstrated huge potential and quality.
Los Blancos attempted through Toni Kroos and Alvaro Morata on a couple of more occasions but the score remained unchanged for a comfortable 2-0 cushion for Real Madrid after the first 45 minutes.
Little changed after the break as Real Madrid ended the game with 55% of ball possession and 17 goal attempts, seven of which were on target including the third goal Gareth Bale scored in the dying moments of the game.
Hosts failed to fire a single shot towards Real Madrid’s goal which perfectly sums up their poor performance at Anoeta.
Not a good start to the season for Eusebio Sacristan’s men, who were fortunate enough not to lose with a larger margin to Real Madrid.
Hosts did try to shake things up with a quick start to the second half by putting pressure inside Real Madrid’s half but they simply weren’t able to fashion a single genuine chance for the entire 90 minutes.
Real Madrid responded through Toni Kroos who smashed a first-time shot ten minutes inside the second half, sending the ball crashing into the crossbar.
Mateo Kovacic also had a wonderful opportunity to score after making a yard for himself and producing a short-range rocket of a shot. Geronimo Rulli pulled an equally brilliant save to deny the Croatian midfielder’s effort.
And as the game looked over Real Madrid pulled a dying-moment surprise through Gareth Bale who capped his performance with a brace.
James Rodriguez displayed great vision by sending a lovely pass to Gareth Bale with Welsh international rushing inside the box and placing the ball into the back of the net.
Comfortable win for Real Madrid in the end, who begin their La Liga title chase with three points in the bag and three points on the tally much to delight of head coach Zinedine Zidane, who is likely to be rewarded with a new contract until the end of the summer.
REAL SOCIEDAD: Rulli 7 – Zaldua 6, Gonzales 6 (Vela 6), Martinez 6.5, Berchiche 6 – Bergara 6, Illaramendi 6.5 – Concha 6 (Willian Jose 6.5), Zurutuza 6.5, Oyarzabal 6 – Juanmi 5.5 (Prieto 6)
Unused subs: Elusondo, Litri, Pardo, Tono
REAL MADRID: Casilla 6 – Carvajal 7.5, Varane 7.5, Ramos 7, Marcelo 7 – Kovacic 7, Casemiro 6.5, Kroos 8 (Isco 6.5) – Bale 8.5, Morata 6.5 (Rodriguez 7), Asensio 7.5 (Lucas 6.5)
Unused subs: Danilo, Diaz M, Nacho, Yanez
REFEREE: Juan Martinez
Other results this evening
Gijon 2-1 Athletic Bilbao