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Result: Karim Benzema brace sends Rafael Benitez's Real Madrid top of La Liga

Real Madrid move to the top of the La Liga table following a 2-1 win over Athletic Bilbao at the San Mames stadium.

A Karim Benzema brace in a 2-1 victory away to Athletic Bilbao has sent Real Madrid to the top of La Liga.

Benzema got his first of the tie in the first half by pouncing on a Mikel San Jose backpass before firing past Gorka Iraizoz in the Bilbao goal.

Both sides created several chances in the opening period; Keylor Navas denied Aritz Aduriz's diving header before Iraizoz managed to keep out a point-blank strike from Mateo Kovacic.

Early in the second half Bilbao felt that they had a genuine penalty shout as Pepe, who had been booked minutes earlier, was perceived to block an Aduriz effort in the box with his hand, but the referee denied Ernesto Valverde's side a spot kick.

Bilbao levelled the match after 67 minutes as Sabin Merino diverted his header past Navas from a Markel Susaeta cross.

Rafael Benitez's men replied immediately through Benzema, who finished from close range after a Luka Modric reverse pass allowed Isco to tee up the France striker.

Aduriz missed the chance to bring Bilbao level soon after as he volleyed an effort inside the box straight at Navas.

Navas tipped a Raul Garcia header onto the crossbar a minute from time to ensure that his side left San Mames with all three points.

Real Madrid move to the top of the La Liga table after Barcelona were beaten by Celta Vigo earlier on Wednesday evening.

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Real Madrid's coach Rafael Benitez gestures during the Spanish league football match Real Madrid CF vs Granada FC at the Santiago Bernabeu stadium in Madrid on Spetember 19, 2015
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Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Atletico MadridAtletico31217357203770
2Real Madrid31207453242967
3Barcelona30205569264365
4Sevilla31204746252164
5Villarreal311213648341449
6Real Betis31146114245-348
7Real Sociedad311211848331547
8Granada30116133650-1439
9Levante31911113844-638
10Celta Vigo31911114148-738
11Athletic Bilbao30910113933637
12Osasuna31910122736-937
13CadizCadiz3199132745-1836
14Valencia31811123944-535
15Getafe31710142234-1231
16AlavesAlaves3169162547-2227
17Huesca31512143146-1527
18Real Valladolid30512132741-1427
19ElcheElche31511152748-2126
20EibarEibar31411162241-1923

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