Spanish La Liga
Real MadridReal Madrid4SevillaSevilla0

Real Madrid 4-0 Sevilla

By Jonathan JurejkoBBC Sport
Gareth Bale
Gareth Bale scored his 43rd La Liga goal with Madrid's third against Sevilla

Gareth Bale became the leading British goalscorer in La Liga history as Real Madrid thumped Sevilla in an action-packed match at the Bernabeu.

The Welshman twice hit the woodwork and had a strike disallowed before tapping in his 43rd goal in the Spanish top flight, beating Gary Lineker's tally.

Madrid led through Karim Benzema's wonderful half-volley, before Sevilla's Kevin Gameiro missed a penalty.

Cristiano Ronaldo and Jese, either side of Bale's goal, sealed the win.

However, despite producing one of their best performances in recent weeks, Zinedine Zidane's side are still 10 points adrift of arch-rivals Barcelona in the title race.

Relive a dramatic night at the Bernabeu

Gary Lineker

Bale leads Brits abroad in Spain

Wales forward Bale, 26, has become a firm favourite at the Bernabeu since his world record £85m move from Tottenham in September 2013, scoring his 43 league goals at an impressive rate.

Despite suffering with several injuries since arriving, Bale's strike-rate has not suffered - netting more than once every two games in his 76 La Liga appearances so far.

There had been a slight doubt over whether he would even start Sunday's game against sixth-placed Sevilla.

Bale will miss Wales' two friendly games next week because of fitness concerns and the impending birth of his second child.

But not only did he play, he outshone Ronaldo and Benzema in a full-strength Real attack.

Bale looked sharp from the start, his pace and movement causing problems for the Sevilla defence, and teeing up Benzema's stunning opener with a low cross from the right.

After seeing Sevilla's inspired keeper Sergio Rico tip his drive onto the post and then wrongly being ruled to have strayed offside when he flicked in Ronaldo's header, he finally passed ex-Barcelona and England striker Lineker's tally with a simple finish from six yards after the break.

And when the Welshman was withdrawn after 70 minutes, the Bernabeu crowd responded with a standing ovation.

La Liga's leading British scorers
PlayerClubGoalsGames
Gareth BaleReal Madrid4376
Gary LinekerBarcelona42103
Steve ArchibaldBarcelona2455
Laurie CunninghamReal Madrid, Sporting Gijon1674

Not the Real deal in title race

Third-placed Madrid's chances of winning their first La Liga title since 2012 remain minimal, despite both of the teams above them dropping points over the weekend.

Barca's draw at Villarreal earlier on Sunday, and second-placed Atletico's shock loss at Sporting Gijon on Saturday, have given Los Merengues the faintest of renewed hope.

Zidane's start to managerial life has not been plain sailing, with the Frenchman unable to name a settled side because of injuries and suspension, and struggling to stamp a distinct style on his new team.

However, they blew Sevilla away with a scintillating attacking display.

Away keeper Rico produced a string of top-class saves to keep the scoreline to a minimum at half-time, but was powerless to stop the home team after the break.

True, it may have been different had top scorer Gameiro converted his first-half penalty, or had his early second-half strike not wrongly disallowed for offside, when Real held just a 1-0 lead.

But 26 shots at goal, including a rare missed penalty from Ronaldo which he ballooned over the crossbar, highlighted their superiority as Atletico's lead was cut to just one point.

What next?

After the upcoming international break, Real Madrid will focus on the small matter of El Clasico.

Zidane faces Barcelona for the first time as manager when he takes Los Merengues to the Nou Camp on Saturday, 2 April (19:30 BST).

What Zidane said

"Our objective in the league is to overtake Atletico. Now we are closer," said the Frenchman afterwards.

"Clasicos are always special. It was important to get a win before. We are ready. It will be a great game."

Line-ups

Real Madrid

Formation 4-3-3

  • 1Navas
  • 23Danilo
  • 2VaraneBooked at 26mins
  • 6Nacho
  • 12Marcelo
  • 8Kroos
  • 14CasemiroBooked at 54minsSubstituted forRodríguezat 76'minutes
  • 19Modric
  • 11BaleSubstituted forRodríguez Ruizat 70'minutes
  • 9BenzemaSubstituted forIscoat 81'minutes
  • 7Cristiano Ronaldo

Substitutes

  • 10Rodríguez
  • 13Casilla
  • 15Carvajal
  • 17Arbeloa
  • 18Vázquez
  • 20Rodríguez Ruiz
  • 22Isco

Sevilla

Formation 4-4-1-1

  • 1Rico
  • 23Andújar Moreno
  • 3Rami
  • 5Kolodziejczak
  • 2Trémoulinas
  • 17FigueirasSubstituted forReyesat 45'minutesBooked at 57mins
  • 4KrychowiakBooked at 62mins
  • 14CristóforoSubstituted forFerreira Filhoat 72'minutes
  • 18Escudero
  • 8IborraSubstituted forMuñoz Muñozat 71'minutes
  • 9Gameiro

Substitutes

  • 10Reyes
  • 11Muñoz Muñoz
  • 13Beto
  • 16Fazio
  • 24Llorente
  • 25Ferreira Filho
  • 27Cotán Pérez
Referee:
Javier Estrada Fernández
Attendance:
68,782

Match Stats

Home TeamReal MadridAway TeamSevilla
Possession
Home63%
Away37%
Shots
Home26
Away8
Shots on Target
Home12
Away4
Corners
Home8
Away8
Fouls
Home10
Away10

Live Text

  1. Post update

    Match ends, Real Madrid 4, Sevilla 0.

  2. Full Time

    Second Half ends, Real Madrid 4, Sevilla 0.

  3. Post update

    Foul by James Rodríguez (Real Madrid).

  4. Post update

    Reyes (Sevilla) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  5. Post update

    Attempt missed. Benoît Trémoulinas (Sevilla) left footed shot from the centre of the box is close, but misses to the right. Assisted by Mariano with a cross.

  6. Goal!

    Goal! Real Madrid 4, Sevilla 0. Jesé (Real Madrid) right footed shot from the centre of the box to the bottom right corner.

  7. Post update

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

  8. Post update

    Foul by Juan Muñoz (Sevilla).

  9. Post update

    Attempt saved. Kevin Gameiro (Sevilla) right footed shot from the right side of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Reyes.

  10. Post update

    Offside, Real Madrid. Marcelo tries a through ball, but Cristiano Ronaldo is caught offside.

  11. Post update

    Offside, Real Madrid. Danilo tries a through ball, but Cristiano Ronaldo is caught offside.

  12. Post update

    Attempt saved. Sergio Escudero (Sevilla) left footed shot from the left side of the box is saved in the bottom right corner. Assisted by Benoît Trémoulinas.

  13. Substitution

    Substitution, Real Madrid. Isco replaces Karim Benzema.

  14. Post update

    Attempt missed. Kevin Gameiro (Sevilla) right footed shot from the left side of the box is just a bit too high. Assisted by Timothée Kolodziejczak.

  15. Post update

    Corner, Sevilla. Conceded by Marcelo.

  16. Post update

    Corner, Real Madrid. Conceded by Adil Rami.

  17. Substitution

    Substitution, Real Madrid. James Rodríguez replaces Casemiro.

  18. Substitution

    Substitution, Sevilla. Mariano replaces Sebastián Cristóforo.

  19. Substitution

    Substitution, Sevilla. Juan Muñoz replaces Vicente Iborra.

  20. Substitution

    Substitution, Real Madrid. Jesé replaces Gareth Bale.

As It Stood

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Barcelona30244286246276
2Atl Madrid30214546143267
3Real Madrid30206487285966
4Villarreal30159637251254
5Celta Vigo30146104351-848
6Sevilla3013984335848
7Ath Bilbao30145114839947
8Malaga30109112928139
9Eibar30108124242038
10Dep La Coruña3071583943-436
11Real Sociedad3098133741-435
12Espanyol30105153156-2535
13Real Betis30810122740-1334
14Valencia30810123336-334
15Las Palmas3096153242-1033
16Rayo Vallecano30610144163-2228
17Granada3077163256-2428
18Getafe3077162852-2428
19Sporting Gijón3076173252-2027
20Levante3066182854-2624
View full Spanish La Liga table

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