Spanish La Liga
Villarreal2Real Madrid3

Villarreal 2-3 Real Madrid

Real Madrid
Cristiano Ronaldo (right) scored from the spot following a controversial penalty decision

Real Madrid came from 2-0 down to record a remarkable win at Villarreal, a victory that saw them return to the top of La Liga.

The pivotal moment came at 2-1 when Villarreal's Bruno was adjudged to have handled in the area, although it was disputed if it was intentional.

Cristiano Ronaldo made it 2-2 from the spot after Gareth Bale had headed in Real's first.

Substitute Alvaro Morata then nodded in the winner seven minutes from time.

Real have 55 points, one clear of Barcelona who defeated Atletico Madrid 2-1 earlier on Sunday. Real also have a game in hand over their fierce rivals and over Sevilla, who sit in third with 52 points.

Relive the action as it happened

La Liga

Villarreal stun Real

Coach Fran Escriba's Villarreal went into the match with the tag of 'the meanest defence in the league', having conceded only 15 goals this season.

They lived up to that in the opening half, by barely giving Real a sniff. The closest the visitors came to scoring was when Karim Benzema's header was spectacularly saved by Sergio Asenjo, from point-blank range,

The keeper was substituted having suffered a knee injury in keeping out the France striker's effort. It was later revealed the 27-year-old had suffered cruciate damage.

After the break, Villarreal took a deserved lead when Manu Trigueros fired a half volley past the reach of keeper Keylor Navas. Six minutes later, Real were rocked once more when Congolese forward Cedric Bakambu out-muscled Sergio Ramos to fire in low.

The visitors were staring at defeat.

Real mount fightback & penalty controversy

Gareth Bale
Gareth Bale was replaced in the 88th minute moments after appearing to hurt his ankle

Los Blancos pulled a goal back in the 64th minute when full-back Dani Carvajal picked out Bale with a great cross.

However, Villarreal still looked comfortable until the 73rd minute when their opponents were awarded a hotly disputed penalty.

Victor Ruiz blocked Toni Kroos' low shot but the ball spun up on to the arm of Bruno Soriano. Referee Gil Manzano thought it was intentional handball and pointed to the spot leading to furious exchanges between Villarreal staff on the touchline and the fourth official. Substitute Roberto Soldado was shown a yellow card for dissent.

Ronaldo fired in the penalty and Real sensed that they could snatch one of their most surprising wins of the season.

With seven minutes of the contest left, Real realised just that when substitute Morata headed in from Marcelo's pinpoint cross.

Bale injury?

In the 88th minute, Bale was replaced by Lucas Vazquez moments after he appeared to land awkwardly on his ankle.

The Wales international, who has only just recently returned to action after two months out, did not appear to be in discomfort as he walked off the pitch.

Line-ups

Villarreal

  • 1AsenjoSubstituted forFernándezat 35'minutes
  • 2Pérez MartínezBooked at 90mins
  • 5Musacchio
  • 6Ruiz
  • 11Costa
  • 21BrunoBooked at 73mins
  • 8dos Santos
  • 19Castillejo Azuaga
  • 14Trigueros MuñozSubstituted forHernández Cascanteat 75'minutes
  • 15AdriánSubstituted forCheryshevat 57'minutes
  • 17Bakambu

Substitutes

  • 7Cheryshev
  • 9Soldado
  • 12González
  • 13Fernández
  • 16Hernández Cascante
  • 20Soriano
  • 22Rukavina

Real Madrid

  • 1Navas
  • 2Carvajal
  • 3PepeBooked at 90mins
  • 4RamosBooked at 77mins
  • 12Marcelo
  • 19Modric
  • 14CasemiroSubstituted forIscoat 58'minutes
  • 8Kroos
  • 11BaleSubstituted forVázquezat 89'minutes
  • 9BenzemaSubstituted forMorataat 77'minutes
  • 7Ronaldo

Substitutes

  • 6Nacho
  • 10Rodríguez
  • 13Casilla
  • 16Kovacic
  • 17Vázquez
  • 21Morata
  • 22Isco
Referee:
Jesús Gil Manzano
Attendance:
20,878

Match Stats

Home TeamVillarrealAway TeamReal Madrid
Possession
Home50%
Away50%
Shots
Home11
Away25
Shots on Target
Home4
Away6
Corners
Home5
Away5
Fouls
Home15
Away6

Live Text

Match ends, Villarreal 2, Real Madrid 3.

Full Time

Second Half ends, Villarreal 2, Real Madrid 3.

Attempt missed. Álvaro Morata (Real Madrid) left footed shot from very close range misses to the left. Assisted by Daniel Carvajal.

Booking

Pepe (Real Madrid) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Foul by Pepe (Real Madrid).

Rodri (Villarreal) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Booking

Mario (Villarreal) is shown the yellow card.

Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Foul by Mario (Villarreal).

Attempt missed. Jonathan dos Santos (Villarreal) right footed shot from the centre of the box is close, but misses to the right.

Attempt blocked. Samu Castillejo (Villarreal) header from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Jaume Costa with a cross.

Attempt missed. Sergio Ramos (Real Madrid) header from the centre of the box is just a bit too high. Assisted by Toni Kroos with a cross following a corner.

Substitution

Substitution, Real Madrid. Lucas Vázquez replaces Gareth Bale because of an injury.

Delay over. They are ready to continue.

Delay in match Gareth Bale (Real Madrid) because of an injury.

Corner, Real Madrid. Conceded by Víctor Ruiz.

Attempt blocked. Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Gareth Bale.

Goal!

Goal! Villarreal 2, Real Madrid 3. Álvaro Morata (Real Madrid) header from the centre of the box to the centre of the goal. Assisted by Marcelo with a cross.

Isco (Real Madrid) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Rodri (Villarreal).

Attempt missed. Álvaro Morata (Real Madrid) header from the centre of the box misses to the right. Assisted by Marcelo with a cross following a corner.

Corner, Real Madrid. Conceded by Mario.

Foul by Mario (Villarreal).

Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Attempt missed. Marcelo (Real Madrid) left footed shot from outside the box misses to the right following a corner.

Attempt blocked. Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid) right footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Sergio Ramos with a cross.

Attempt blocked. Sergio Ramos (Real Madrid) header from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Marcelo with a cross.

Corner, Real Madrid. Conceded by Rodri.

Foul by Denis Cheryshev (Villarreal).

Luka Modric (Real Madrid) wins a free kick on the right wing.

Offside, Real Madrid. Daniel Carvajal tries a through ball, but Álvaro Morata is caught offside.

Substitution

Substitution, Real Madrid. Álvaro Morata replaces Karim Benzema.

Booking

Sergio Ramos (Real Madrid) is shown the yellow card.

Substitution

Substitution, Villarreal. Rodri replaces Manu Trigueros.

Goal!

Goal! Villarreal 2, Real Madrid 2. Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid) converts the penalty with a right footed shot to the bottom left corner.

Booking

Álvaro González (Villarreal) is shown the yellow card.

Booking

Roberto Soldado (Villarreal) is shown the yellow card.

Booking

Bruno Soriano (Villarreal) is shown the yellow card.

Penalty conceded by Bruno Soriano (Villarreal) with a hand ball in the penalty area.

Attempt missed. Toni Kroos (Real Madrid) left footed shot from outside the box misses to the right. Assisted by Daniel Carvajal.

goal

As It Stood

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Real Madrid23174260223855
2Barcelona24166265204554
3Sevilla24164448291952
4Atl Madrid24136544212345
5Real Sociedad2414283732544
6Villarreal24109532181439
7Eibar2411583931838
8Ath Bilbao2411583129238
9Espanyol249873331235
10Celta Vigo2310493737034
11Alavés248972429-533
12Las Palmas2477103236-428
13Valencia2475123443-926
14Malaga2468103140-926
15Real Betis2366112337-1424
16Leganés2456132039-1921
17Deportivo La Coruña2347122639-1319
18Sporting Gijón2445152648-2217
19Granada2437142252-3016
20Osasuna2417162455-3110
View full Spanish La Liga table

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