Round-up: Cristiano Ronaldo, Gareth Bale and Karim Benzema thrill as Real thrash Betis


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The Independent Football

Cristiano Ronaldo, Gareth Bale and Karim Benzema took Real Betis apart to give Real Madrid a resounding 5-0 win yesterday that put them level on 50 points with Barcelona and Atletico Madrid at the top of La Liga.

Known collectively in Spain as the ‘BBC’, Bale, Benzema and Cristiano cost the world’s richest club in excess of £180 million, more than three times the value of the Betis squad. Ronaldo (bottom, with Bale), who also scored in the 2-0 King’s Cup win at Osasuna on Wednesday, celebrated Monday’s Fifa Ballon d’Or award for the world’s best player with a stunning opener in the 10th minute. The Portugal forward picked up a pass from Angel Di Maria on the left, cut inside and unleashed a powerful shot past home goalkeeper Stephan Andersen for his 21st league goal of the campaign. Andersen was again left rooted to the spot when Bale’s delicate free-kick nestled in the net in the 25th minute. The situation worsened for Betis when Luka Modric fed Benzema, who celebrated his 100th goal for Madrid in all competitions. Di Maria added the fourth after the break with a long-range drive before Alvaro Morata completed the rout.

Will Davids join Seedorf?

Edgar Davids resigned last night as Barnet’s head coach amid speculation that he could team up with Clarence Seedorf at AC Milan. The pair were team-mates for Holland and Davids’ decision came on the day of Seedorf’s unveiling as head coach at San Siro. The 37-year-old has been appointed as Massimiliano Allegri’s successor on a two-and-a-half-year contract, inheriting a team who have won five of their 19 Serie A games this season. “We’re all very lucky to be able to do our job almost as if it was a hobby,” he said. “These are my first words – to bring back joy and enthusiasm about playing football.”