MX23RW : Tuesday, October 23 08:15:18
Sep 22, 2018 at 7.45pm UK at ​Estadio Santiago Bernabeu
Attendance: 67,658
Real Madrid
1-0
Espanyol
Asensio (41')
FT(HT: 1-0)
Timeline
6'     Nacho (Unsportsmanlike cond)
(Roughing) M. Roca        26'
41'     M. Asensio
(Roughing) J. Lopez        45+1'
(P. Piatti) L. Baptistao        54'
(S. Darder) V. Sanchez        55'
59'     Mariano (K. Benzema)
62'     Lucas (D. Ceballos)
(H. Perez) S. Garcia        70'
77'     Casemiro
78'     M. Llorente (Isco)

Result: Marco Asensio fires Real Madrid past Espanyol

Marco Asensio's 41st-minute strike against former club Espanyol earns Real Madrid a 1-0 win at the Bernabeu.

Real Madrid have defeated Espanyol 1-0 at the Santiago Bernabeu to climb to the top of the La Liga table, earning the points through a first-half strike from Marco Asensio.

The Spain international, previously on Espanyol's books during a 2015-16 loan spell, found a way through 41 minutes in against his former club for what proved to be the winning moment.

Los Blancos toiled in the second half and could have extended their advantage, but Espanyol also had a big chance of their own as Borja Iglesias hit the crossbar with goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois beaten.

Marco Asensio celebrates after scoring the opening goal for Real Madrid in their La Liga meeting with Espanyol on September 22, 2018© Reuters

The home side should have been ahead with five minutes played, only for Isco to shin the ball wide of goal when picked out in the middle.

Visiting boss Rubi made three changes to his side, taking out Sergio Garcia and Leo Baptistao from the forward line with an eye on padding out his midfield and focusing on the counter.

One of the players brought in nearly took full advantage, as the ball was worked to Pablo Piatti and he fired it wide of the target.

Despite dominating possession in the first half, Real - two points better off than this stage last season heading into the match - were struggling to create any clear-cut openings in the first half.

Raphael Varane headed wide from a rare chance, while up the other end Hernan Perez shot too close to Courtois at the end of another Espanyol counter.

That near-miss for the Periquitos may have acted as a wake-up call for Madrid, as five minutes later they were in front through Asensio's drilled finish.

The Spanish attacker took Luka Modric's deflected shot in his path and made no mistake - VAR ruling that he was not standing in an offside position.

Building on their strong end to the first half, Real nearly doubled their advantage early in the second period as Modric's shot was saved by Diego Lopez.

Isco then curled one wide as the European champions looked for a killer second, but complacency then began to creep in and Espanyol should have profited.

Sergio Ramos was caught in possession at the back and Iglesias was through on goal, but his chipped attempt over Courtois came back off the crossbar.

The experienced centre-back was kept out by a good Lopez save at the other end of the field as he looked to take matters into his own hands, and the Espanyol keeper was also equal to substitute Marcos Llorente's shot.

Espanyol probed away in the closing stages to no avail, leaving them without a win here since 1996, while Madrid climb above Barcelona into top spot ahead of the champions' game in hand against Girona on Sunday.

REAL MADRID (4-3-3): Courtois; Nacho, Ramos, Varane, Odriozola; Casemiro, Modric, Ceballos (Vazquez 62'); Isco (Llorente 78'), Benzema (Mariano 59'), Asensio

ESPANYOL (4-5-1): Diego Lopez; Javi Lopez, Naldo, Hermoso, Vila; Perez (Garcia 70'), Marc Roca, Darder (Sanchez 55'), Granero, Piatti (Baptistao 54'); Iglesias

Share this article now:
Real Madrid's Thibaut Courtois and Sergio Ramos shake hands on September 1, 2018
Read Next:
How Real Madrid could line up against Roma
>

Loading ...

Failed to load data.

Loading ...

Failed to load data.

Select and display your favourite team's news and scores in this panel

Loading ...

Failed to load data.

Loading ...

Failed to load data.

Select and display your favourite team's news and scores in this panel
Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Barcelona953123111218
2Espanyol9522137617
3AlavesAlaves9522128417
4Sevilla95132012816
5Atletico MadridAtletico9441105516
6Real Valladolid943286215
7Real Madrid9423139414
8Levante94141415-113
9Real Sociedad93331211112
10Getafe933388012
11Real Betis933357-212
12EibarEibar9324912-311
13Celta Vigo92431313010
14Valencia917178-110
15GironaGirona92431013-310
16Villarreal923478-19
17Athletic Bilbao8152913-48
18Leganes9225813-58
19Rayo Vallecano8125817-95
20Huesca9126720-135

Subscribe to our Newsletter


Transfer Talk Daily
Match previews - twice weekly
Morning Briefing (7am UTC)
Ultra close-up image of Kevin De Bruyne [NOT FOR USE IN ARTICLES]Get the latest transfer news, match previews and news direct to your inbox!

Loading ...

Failed to load data.

Loading ...

Failed to load data.

Select and display your favourite team's news and scores in this panel
Login, I already have my ad-free pass
Log in to customise Sports Mole
Buy ad-free access (show me the options)
Buy monthly ad-free access for £1.20/month
Buy yearly ad-free access for £12 (2 months free)
Settings - Logout - Manage your account
Settings - Logout - Manage your account