Match Report / Real Sociedad 0-1 Real Madrid

Matchday 36 – Real Sociedad 0-1 Real Madrid – Match Report

Saturday 30th April 2016

26,426 Spectators

BY PAUL MURRAY

Real Madrid kept their title hopes alive by securing all three points at the Anoeta Stadium. Zidane’s side went into the match just a point behind leaders Barcelona and Atletico Madrid.

They knew that victory would take them top of the table for at least a few hours, with both their rivals playing later in the day.  They duly delivered that victory recording their 10th league win in a row.

The team from the capital struggled to break down a resilient Real Sociedad side who defended strongly to resist their opponents until late in the game.  But they were ultimately undone by Gareth Bale’s powerful header in the 80th minute from a fine Lucas Vazquez cross.  It was Bale’s ninth headed goal in the league this season, more than any other player in Europe’s top five leagues.

Madrid missed a handful of good chances, with Bale particularly guilty, but home goal keeper Gero Rulli had another fine game which will only serve to enhance his reputation.  It appears it will be difficult for the Basque team to retain him next season as bigger clubs will be vying for his services.

The home team pushed hard for an equaliser in the final 10 minutes and it took a good save from Keylor Navas to prevent a Zurutuza header from grabbing an injury-time equaliser.

Overall Real Sociedad defended well against a nervous looking Madrid team.  Ultimately the absence of attacking options mean we were unlikely to get much from this fixture.  Mikel Oyarzabal ran hard all afternoon but he was often left isolated as the deficiencies in the Basque team’s squad was highlighted.

We have had insufficient options in front of goal all season and the suspension of Carlos Vela and the injuries to Agirretxe and Jonathas have led to us to playing a home game without selecting a recognised striker. Eusebio introduced Sanse forward Jon Bautista for his home debut in the last 15 minutes, but for me it was too little too late.

The match statistics showed: Possession 46/54% in favour of Real Madrid, we managed 8 shots of which only 4 were on target. We won 6 corners and received 4 yellow cards: Illarra (36 mins), Markel (42 mins), Prieto (49 mins) and Zaldua on (64 mins).

Match Details:

Real Sociedad: Rulli, Zaldua, Elustondo, Mikel, Yuri (Héctor Hdez, min.85), M. Bergara (D. Reyes, min.67), Illarra, X. Prieto, Bruma (Bautista, min.76), Zurutuza and Oyarzabal.

Real Madrid: Navas, Danilo, Varane, Sergio Ramos (cap), Nacho, Casemiro, Modric (Kovacic, min.85), James (Isco, min.73), Lucas V., Bale and Mayoral (Jesé, min.65).

Goal: 0-1: Bale, min.80

Referee: Undiano Mallenco. Booked: Illarra, M. Bergara, Xabi Prieto, Zaldua and for the visitors  Bale, Sergio Ramos, Nacho, Modric.

Crowd: 26.426 espectadores.

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