Real Madrid stayed alive in the La Liga title race after Karim Benzema’s 88th-minute equaliser helped them hold leaders Atletico Madrid to 1-1 draw at the Wanda Metropolitano. Luis Suarez put the home side ahead in the 15th minute and Diego Simeone’s side looked set to take all three points but Benzema, who had been faulty in front of goal throughout the match, had other plans. His late equaliser kept Atletico at touching distance although they have a game in hand. Real remained third with 54 points five behind Simeone’s side, who are chasing their first league title since 2014. Sergio Ramos Transfer News Update: Real Madrid Set Expiration Date on Contract Renewal Offer.
Suarez opened the scoring for Atletico within the opening 15 minutes with a fine effort using the outside of his boot after some good work from Marcos Llorente. The goal ended a five-game goal drought for the former Barcelona striker. This was also his 498th career goal for club and country. Lionel Messi Named La Liga Player of the Month for February 2021, Argentine Scores Seven Goals in Five Appearances.
Real, who found themselves behind early in this crucial clash, had a shout for a penalty turned down by VAR late in the first half after the ball had brushed Felipe’s arm. They went into the Madrid derby five points behind Atletico and could have ended eight behind with the leaders had they lost the match.
Atletico Madrid vs Real Madrid Goal Video Highlights
But Atletico’s goal-shy forwards and some clinical play from Benzema helped Real come out with at least a point. Barcelona, at second, are now second just three points behind Atletico Madrid. The home side had their chances to close the game out but Suarez failed to beat Thibaut Courtois while Yannick Carrasco and Llorente went close but shot wide.
Benzema too squandered a golden opportunity to put Real level in the 80th minute when his effort was turned behind by Jan Oblak. But the striker made amends eight minutes later when he met Casemiro’s pass for the equaliser.
The draw kept the title race somewhat open. Atletico Madrid are still on top with 59 points from 26 matches. Barcelona and Real are three and five points behind respectively having played a match more.
(The above story first appeared on LatestLY on Mar 08, 2021 09:23 AM IST. For more news and updates on politics, world, sports, entertainment and lifestyle, log on to our website latestly.com).