El Clásico: Real Madrid beat their rivals Barcelona 3-1 to top La Liga




CNN

Real Madrid and Barcelona have both gone unbeaten in La Liga this season, with Barça leading their rival at the top of the league on points.

But after the centenary edition of El Clásico at the Bernabeu, it was Real Madrid who, despite a late comeback from Barcelona, ​​made their mark in the league with a 3-1 win on Sunday.

Madrid appeared on course to victory after goals from Karim Benzema and Federico Valverde gave them a 2-0 lead at half-time, while Benzema celebrated midway through the second half as if he’d added a third only to write it offside.

But as the game seemed to ebb towards a regular Madrid victory, Barcelona beat Torres 2-1 through Ferran and set up a grandstand final.

Although Barcelona continued to push for an equaliser, it was Madrid who confirmed their eventual victory late on with a Rodrygo penalty.

Rodrygo's penalty in the 90th minute confirmed Madrid's victory.

Each side had experienced very different run-ins over the weekend.

While Madrid progressed to the knockout rounds of the Champions League on Wednesday, Barcelona’s hopes of a place in the last 16 are now hanging in the balance after a dramatic draw with Inter Milan.

European champions Real showed their merciless streak in the first half and went into the break with a 2-0 lead.

First, Karim Benzema fired a deflection into goal in the 12th minute after Vinícius Júnior Sergi Roberto passed on the wing but couldn’t get his first try past goalkeeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen.

Then a glorious team effort doubled Madrid’s lead 23 minutes later as Valverde completed skillful passes from Vinícius Júnior, Aurélien Tchouaméni and Ferland Mendy.

Valverde's goal put Real Madrid in control.

Barcelona had only glimmers, half-chances that faltered at the last moment – like a ball slipping to Robert Lewandowski, who his foot could only slide over the goal rather than into the goal – as they struggled to defeat Real Madrid’s defence to defuse.

And after half-time the pattern continued, Real controlling possession with ease until, in the 83rd minute, substitute Anssumane Fati found Torres a cross to put his side back in the game.

Fati gave Barcelona’s attack some urgency but just as the game started, the referee gave Madrid a penalty for Eric García’s trip to Rodrygo.

Rodrygo hit the spot and made no mistake with the finish to confirm his side’s victory and their place at the top of the table.