Mar 10, 2013 at 6pm UK at ​Balaídos
Celta Vigo
Real Madrid
Aspas (63')
De Lucas (30'), Varas (71')
FT(HT: 0-0)
Ronaldo (61', 72')
Albiol (42')

Live Commentary: Celta Vigo 1-2 Real Madrid - as it happened

Real Madrid's Cristiano Ronaldo celebrates a goal against Celta Vigo on January 9, 2013
© AP Photos
Sports Mole brings you live commentary of the La Liga clash at the Estadio de Balaidos as Real Madrid record a 2-1 win over Celta Vigo.

Real Madrid travelled to Celta Vigo on Saturday knowing that three points would have moved them into second position in the La Liga table.

Both teams had chances to take the lead in the first period, but impressive stops from each goalkeeper kept the scores level at the interval.

Madrid took the lead through Cristiano Ronaldo early in the second period, but Iago Aspas levelled for Celta moments later.

Madrid secured the points in controversial circumstances, however, as Ronaldo slotted a penalty past Javi Varas with 20 minutes remaining.

Read how it all unfolded in Sports Mole's minute-by-minute live commentary of the action below.

5.52pmEvening all! Our penultimate live La Liga commentary of the weekend comes from Vigo as Celta welcome Real Madrid. The home side currently occupy 18th position in the table, but they are just two points from safety. Madrid, meanwhile, may sit third in the table, 13 points behind Barcelona, but they have been in sensational form in recent weeks.

5.54pmShould Celta pick up all three points against the current Spanish champions, then they would move out of the bottom three. Their home form has been fairly solid this season with five wins from 12 matches, that is in contrast to their away form, which has seen them take just four points from 14 matches.

5.56pmMadrid, as mentioned, are the form team in Spain. They are now just two points behind Atletico Madrid, while they have booked their spot in the final of the Copa del Rey and the quarter-finals of the Champions League in the last couple of weeks. Should they win this evening, they would move above Atletico into second. What a prize an offer.


CELTA: Varas; Demidov, Tunez, Lago, Johny; Borja, Fernandez, Lopez, Krohn-Dehli; Aspas, De Lucas

REAL MADRID: Lopez; Essien, Albiol, Pepe, Marcelo; Modric, Ozil, Khedira; Callejon, Ronaldo, Benzema

0 minHere we go then. Both sets of players join us on the pitch. Just a quick note on the team news. Enrique De Lucas is handed a start alongside Iago Aspas in the Celta attack, while Cristiano Ronaldo and Karim Benzema start for Real Madrid. The home side get the action underway on this mild evening in Spain.

2 minThere is no question that Madrid's 'swagger' has just returned in recent weeks. They are certainly playing their best football of the season. It is the home side that have first chance as Aspas breaks free of the Madrid defence, but Lopez comes out to clear at the vital moment.

4 minAgain it's good work from the home side as De Lucas collects possession before combining with Aspas, but the ball moves out for a corner. The resulting set piece is delivered by Lopez, but the danger is cleared. No Ramos, Varane or Coentrao in the Madrid side this evening as they are given a rest following their exploits against Manchester United last week.

6 minBetter possession from Madrid in the last couple of moments with Ozil and Khedira starting to gain hold of the ball in the middle of midfield. The latter attempts to slide a pass towards Callejon, but Varas is out to collect. Not too many clear opportunities in the opening six minutes of this clash.

8 minCelta again force the issue as Fernandez collects possession in a wide area before striking towards the near post, but Lopez was always comfortable in dealing with the danger. The Madrid goalkeeper finds Ronaldo on the counter, but the Portuguese is well marshalled by the Celta defence. The home side are certainly in control in the early stages of this match.

10 minAgain the Madrid defence is tested as Aspas collects possession before feeding a pass towards De Lucas, but Albiol is across to clear at the vital moment. Madrid have certainly not been too impressive on the road at times this season. You just get the feeling that Celta need to score during this period in the match.

12 minAnother half-chance comes to the home side as Aspas darts into the box before striking towards the bottom corner, but Lopez is on hand to palm wide of the post. Lopez is again called into action moments later to collect a strike from Lopez. Madrid cannot get out of their own half at the moment.

14 minFirst bit of real quality from the away side as Modric dances past two players before finding Benzema in a wide area, but the Frenchman is ruled offside at the vital moment. Not too much from Callejon and Ronaldo in the opening 14 minutes of this match. But credit must be given to Celta. They have started this match like a house on fire.

16 minNot too much to report in the last couple of moments with both teams guilty of poor passing in the final third. Another corner comes to the home side, but Lopez comes a long way to clear the danger. Aspas remains the threat for Celta, but Pepe just appears to be marking the striker out of the game as things stand.

18 minLopez is again called into action to deal with a strike from Fernandez, but not only does the Spaniard make the save, he comes to claim the resulting corner. His long throw releases Callejon, but the Spaniard cannot find Ronaldo with a low cross. Little under 20 minutes of football played and the score remains 0-0.

20 minRonaldo makes the run behind the Celta defence before collecting a pass from Benzema, but the linesman raises his flag. Another opportunity arrives moments later, but once more the flag is raised. End-to-end football at the moment as both sides search for the opening goal. Wonderful entertainment in this La Liga contest.

22 minAnother chance for the home side to put a dangerous ball into the Madrid penalty area as Essien fells Aspas in a wide area. The resulting free kick is whipped into the box by Fernandez, but he fires his effort just over the crossbar. Celta have been the better side thus far make no mistake about that.

24 minMadrid have just started to take control of the possession in the last few moments with Ronaldo having more of an influence on the match. The Portuguese is involved as he fires a low cross into the box, but Benzema could not make contact. Varas is then called into action to save from Benzema.

26 minYou do worry whether Celta will be able to keep up this tempo in the second period, which is why it is so important that they score while enjoying this good spell of pressure. Make no mistake about it, Madrid will respond at some point. Just about 20 minutes of the first period remaining.

28 minAspas is again involved as he fires a cross towards the back post, but Albiol is on hand to turn behind his own goal. Another corner is whipped into the penalty area by Fernandez, but the danger is cleared once more. Not too much to report in terms of chances as the 30-minute mark approaches.

31 minThe possession is split even at 50/50 as the first period begins to enter its latter stages. Madrid have started to put their foot on the ball, but Celta remain the team in the ascendancy. I do not mean to sound like a broken record, but they simply have to score during this period. We have seen it all before from Madrid this season.

33 minHalf-chance for Madrid as Ozil whips a dangerous free kick into the penalty area, but Benzema can only head at the goalkeeper from close range. Strange atmosphere in the stadium this evening. There is almost an acceptance that they are going to lose, which seems strange when taking into account the way they have played in the opening 33 minutes.

35 minSlightly scrappy period in the last few minutes with the referee called into action to deal with a number of late challenges. However, it is not as if Madrid are really keen to get the ball moving as Modric casually plays it straight back to Pepe. Madrid do eventually force it into the Celta box, but Tunez is across to clear.

38 minMadrid have certainly raised the tempo in the last couple of moments with Varas on hand to make another fine save against Ronaldo. The resulting corner presents a chance to Albiol, but the defender can only fire over the crossbar. Still 0-0 with little over five minutes of the half remaining.

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40 minHalf-chance for the away side as Ronaldo strikes a free kick from outside the box, but he can only thump his effort straight into the wall. It is all one-way traffic at the moment with the Spanish champions forcing the issue. It does appear that a goal could soon be on its way.

43 minCHANCE! Wonderful chance for the away side to take the lead as Callejon collects a pass from Ronaldo before striking towards the bottom corner, but Varas is across to make a fine save. Celta really are hanging on at the moment.

45 minCROSSBAR! Madrid come within a whisker once more as Benzema finds Ronaldo in the box, but he can only thump his header against the crossbar. How on earth are Jose Mourinho's side not in the lead?

45 minIt is a case of 'anywhere will do' for Celta at the moment as they continue to clear their lines. Benzema fires another low cross into the box, but Varas is across to claim. Meanwhile, the fourth official indicates that we will play an additional one minute at the end of the half.

45 min+1HALF-TIME: Celta Vigo 0-0 Real Madrid

6.48pmSo there we have it. The referee brings the first period to an end with the two sides level at 0-0. Celta certainly started the match the better, but Madrid had three or four clear chances to take the lead in the latter stages of the half.

6.52pmSTATISTICS: Madrid have shaded the possession with 56%, while they have had eight attempts to Celta's six. Both goalkeepers have certainly been busy, but Varas has made some world-class saves thus far. Can he continue to save his side in the second period?

6.56pmBENCH WATCH: The home side have a host of attacking options on the bench in the shape of Orellana and Chu-young Park. Madrid, meanwhile, could call upon the likes of Kaka, Higuain and Morata. There are certainly goals in that list of players.

7pmAs it stands, Madrid would remain third position, but three points would move them above Atletico into second. Celta would move out of the bottom three with a victory, but a point, as it stands, would move them into 18th. There is much to play for in the second period.

46 minHere we go then. Both sets of players join us on the pitch ahead of the second period. One change for the away side at the interval as Xabi Alonso replaces Khedira. However, Celta keep with the same team that took to the field in the first period. Madrid get the half underway.

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48 minConfident start to the second period from Madrid as Alonso immediately takes control of the tempo before finding Ronaldo, but once more the Portuguese loses possession. You just get the feeling that Celta will need to ride their luck if they are to take something from this second period.

50 minAnother half-chance comes to Madrid as Essien fires a cross into the box, but Varas just beats Ronaldo to the ball. Alonso has already had a clear impact on this match as he continues to spray passes from side to side. Just a quick word on Madrid, at this stage last season they were 10 points clear at the top of the table.

53 minCelta just cannot keep hold of the ball at the moment with Madrid pressing deep in the opposing half. It is amazing how one player can just change the entire course of the match. It is the type of match that really needs a goal, just to open it up. It remains goalless with 53 minutes on the clock.

55 minLopez seems to have a problem for the home side as he pulls up with a possible hamstring injury. He hits the deck, but there are some suggestions that he may be able to continue. We will keep an eye on proceedings there. Well, Celta have got through 10 minutes of the second period without conceding. Just 35 more to go.

57 minUnfortunately it is indeed the end of Lopez's match as the midfielder is replaced by Pranjic, who is a vastly experienced Croatian international. Benzema has a half-chance moments later, but once more Varas comes across to make a fine save.

59 minAnother half-chance comes to the away side as Benzema meets a cross from Ronaldo, but his effort is straight at the goalkeeper. Little over 30 minutes of football remaining and as it stands, Celta are hanging on for a very welcome point. But there is a lot more football to be played.

61 minThe chances continue to fall as Marcelo collects a pass from Modric, but he can only fire over the crossbar from close range. That is poor from the Brazilian. Benzema is involved moments later as he collects possession in the box, but Varas comes out to collect.

61 minMadrid have the ball in the back of the net as Benzema fires home from close range, but once more the linesman has raised his flag. Celta have kept just four clean sheet this season, with their last coming in November of last year. Ronaldo is involved this time with a cross into the box, but Tunez is on hand to clear. Meanwhile, Celta replace De Lucas with Bermejo.

61 minGOAL! Celta Vigo 0-1 Real Madrid (Ronaldo)

62 minMadrid finally have their goal as the ball falls to Ronaldo in the penalty area, the attacker turns and finished into the back of the net for his 40th of the season. It had been coming.

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63 minGOAL! Celta Vigo 1-1 Real Madrid (Aspas)

64 minCelta level! Wow. Not the prettiest of goals as Aspas's effort is deflected off Pepe before moving over Lopez and into the back of the net. What a time to add your 10th goal of the season. Game on in Vigo.

66 minMadrid respond with a double change as Callejon and Benzema are replaced by Kaka and Higuain. Well, I can think of two worse chances. Big 25 minutes of football coming up in this match. A win for Madrid would move them into second position in the table. But Celta also have the three points in their sights.

68 minEnd-to-end football at the moment as Higuain comes close for the away side before Aspas causes problems in the Madrid box. You just get the feeling that there is going to be another goal in this match. Celta have to believe that they can claim the three points here.

71 minCHANCE! It's a horror moment for Lopez as the Madrid goalkeeper fumbles in the area, but Albiol is across to clear with Aspas ready to tap home. Madrid are under pressure with 20 minutes of the match remaining.


72 minMadrid are awarded a penalty as Kaka is felled in the penalty area by Varas. It was soft, but there was certainly contact. Ronaldo will take the penalty.

72 minGOAL! Celta Vigo 1-2 Real Madrid (Ronaldo)

73 minRonaldo steps up to thump his effort into the bottom corner. As if there was any doubt whatsoever. The Portuguese is in a sensational run of form at the moment. Can Celta recover once more?

75 minHalf-chance for Celta to get back into the match as Aspas strikes an effort from distance, but Lopez is across to make the save. The goalkeeper makes a slight meal of it, but is able to clear the danger. Little over 15 minutes of football remaining in this La Liga contest.

78 minIn fairness to Celta they have responded since that Ronaldo penalty, but it is almost as if they have ran out of ideas. A challenge from Alonso allows Fernandez the chance to whip a free kick into the penalty area, but Lopez comes a long way to clear the danger. Good pressure from the home side.

80 minVaras makes a meal of a strike from Ronaldo as he loses possession in his own penalty area, but the Celta goalkeeper is able to collect the danger. Taking a closer look at the pitch, both goalkeepers have had problems taking control in their own penalty area. It is stating to cut up. Madrid are comfortable as we enter the final 10 minutes of football.

83 minHalf-chance for the home side as Aspas meets a corner from Fernandez, but he can only fire wide of the post, with help from Lopez. Another corner comes into the box, but this time Pepe heads clear. Another change for Celta Vigo as Park replaces Krohn-Dehli.

85 minGood pressing from the home side once more as Lago fires a dangerous cross into the penalty area, but Aspas just cannot shape his effort into the far corner. Wonderful excitement in the latter stages of this match, but Celta just cannot find that equaliser.

87 minAnother half-chance comes to the home side as Lolo finds Aspas in the box, but Essien is across to clear at the vital moment. Madrid just cannot get out of their own half at the moment, but they are defending well. The break is on if Essien can find Ronaldo...

88 minCHANCE! Stunning chance for Higuain to add Madrid's third of the match, but somehow he fires his effort wide of the post. Stunning miss from the Argentine.

90 minCROSSBAR! Aspas is again involved as he strikes an effort from distance, but it was always straight at the goalkeeper. The rain is really coming down in the latter stages of this match. A glorious chance arrives as Park meets a cross from Aspas, but he thumps his header against the crossbar.

90 min+1Meanwhile, the fourth official indicates that we will play an additional three minutes of stoppage time and we are indeed into the first of those. Modric has possession, but he has decided to run to the corner flag.

90 min+3Possession football for Madrid in the latter stages of this match as they move the ball from left to right. Park does gain possession for the home side before striking a low effort, but Lopez collects. Little under a minute remaining.

90 min+3FULL-TIME: Celta Vigo 1-2 Real Madrid

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7.50pmSo there we have it. Madrid pick up all three points to move into second position in the table. Thanks for joining Sports Mole for the action and be sure to remain with us for action from Atletico against Sociedad. Until then!

Balaidos, home of Celta Vigo
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