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Real Madrid go top after edging controversial game

Pin Karim Benzema got the winner for Real Madrid at Sociedad. AFP
Karim Benzema got the winner for Real Madrid at Sociedad. AFP

Real Madrid go top after edging controversial game

Paul Singh by Paul Singh @besoccer_com - 4 +10k

Goals from Sergio Ramos and Karim Benzema gave Real Madrid a 1-2 win at Real Sociedad at the Anoeta in La Liga. There were talking points over both goals and the second game shortly after Sociedad had a goal disallowed for blocking the keeper's view. Mikel Merino scored for the Basques.

Real Madrid are top of La Liga after beating Real Sociedad 1-2 at the Anoeta. Sergio Ramos, who went off injured, netted a 49th minute penalty after Vinicius was clipped by the defender. 19 minutes later, Januzaj thought he had made it 1-1, but the goal was disallowed as Mikel Merino was deemed to blocking the goalkeeper's view. Madrid went up the other end and scored through Benzema who touched the ball with his shoulder and then Mikel Merino made it 1-2 seven minutes from time, but they ran out of time. 

The game was edged in the first half by Real Madrid, but they did not have many very clear chances. Vinicius got a start and he made the most of his opportunity as he was Madrid's most dangerous player. He headed wide inside two minutes in what was an open start to the contest. 

Benzema had a good chance in the 33rd minute, but Remiro stopped him from close range while Vinicius also stung goalkeeper Remiro's fingertips just before half-time. Real Sociedad had several attacks, but Courtois was hardly called into action in the first period. After half-time, the controversy began. 

In the 48th minute, Vinicius made a sensational run down the near side and then went down in the box as he was about to pull the trigger. He did seem to be clipped by Llorente, but it is often not given. On this occasion, the referee Xavier Estrada Fernandez pointed to the spot and Sergio Ramos sent Remiro the wrong way. That was his 68th La Liga goal, the most ever for a defender. 

Then 20 minutes later, Januzaj thought he had levelled for Sociedad. A rehearsed move saw a corner taken short and the move ended with Januzaj shooting from outside the box into Courtois' near corner. The goal was disallowed as Merino was in an offside position and deemed to be obstructing Courtois' view. It was not a clear obstruction, although he did seem to be slightly obstructed and so the VAR did not intervene. 

Two minutes later, Benzema made it 0-2 after controlling the ball inside the box and turning before firing past Remiro. Real Sociedad were furious claiming a handball, but the ball struck him clearly on the shoulder area and even maybe a bit of chest. It was definitely the least controversial of the three decisions. 

Real Sociedad looked to be out of the game after the second goal and then in the 83rd minute, Mikel Merino pulled one back for the home team. Good play by the home side saw the ball sent into the box and Merino controlled before shooting and scoring off the bar. That goal saw the home side pick up and they look much more dangerous. 

In the 94th minute, Sociedad had their chance to level when Merino's cross was headed wide by Gorka Elustondo, but apart from that, despite Sociedad having plenty of attacking, they were incapable of really putting Real Madrid under pressure. Real Madrid are top of the league on head to head while Sociedad remain sixth after the defeat. 

Paul Singh

Paul Singh

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