Real Madrid 3-1 Eibar: Zidane's men respond to Barcelona win in spectacular fashion
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Real Madrid 3-1 Eibar: Zidane's men respond to Barcelona win in spectacular fashion

Real Madrid kept pace with leaders Barcelona in the battle for the LaLiga title with a comfortable 3-1 win over Eibar at the Estadio Alfredo Di Stéfano on Sunday evening. 

The Los Blancos watched as their archrivals opened the gap at the top with a 4-0 win away to Real Mallorca on Saturday night, and responded in spectacular fashion. 

Zinedine Zidane's men got the game underway, and they settled quickly as they moved to take advantage of the early minutes before Eibar could settle. 

It paid off as the first real chance fell to Toni Kroos after just four minutes, and he made no mistake from the edge of the penalty area as he exquisitely struck the ball into the top corner. 

The goal was allowed to stand after a VAR check as there was suspicion of offside against Benzema in the build-up.

Despite controlling the match for long spells in the opening 25 minutes the hosts could not add to their tally and had to wait until the half-hour mark. 

The hosts broke off in a lightning counter-attack that was started by Sergio Ramos, who spread the ball wide to Benzema on the left as he continued his run into the penalty area. 

The Frenchman found Eden Hazard with a nice through ball, and despite having only the goalie to beat, he chose to unselfishly lay it on the plate for Ramos, who easily finished from close range. 

This time though they did not have to wait for long for a third, as Benzema and Hazard combine beautifully before the latter's shot was palmed away by the keeper. 

His clearance however went as far as Marcelo, who powered the ball straight into the bottom corner for a 3-0 lead. 

The second half was a quiet affair from the home team, and they eased off the pressure a little as they opted to control the match more from midfield. 

They were however punished on the hour-mark as Pedro Bigas gave the visitors a lifeline after the backline failed to comprehensively clear a corner. 

After the poor clearance, the ball made its way back to the penalty area, and it took an awful deflection before hitting Bigas and wrong-footed Courtois in goal for a 3-1 score. 

On the 69th minute, the Belgian keeper was called into action and expertly denied Pedro Leon to preserve Madrid's two-goal lead.

There was little action going into the last 20 minutes as the hosts held on to pick a key win that saw them cut Barcelona's lead to two points.

They next host Valencia on Thursday night, while their rivals face Osasuna on Tuesday night.

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