As it happenedended1544376879

Gareth Bale breaks goal drought as Real Madrid see off Huesca

Callum Rice-Coates
Sunday 09 December 2018 13:49
Comments
Gareth Bale celebrates putting Real Madrid in front
Gareth Bale celebrates putting Real Madrid in front

Gareth Bale ended a three-month goal drought in La Liga to give Real Madrid a nervy 1-0 win away to basement club Huesca on Sunday, taking his side back into the top four at the expense of Alaves.

The Wales forward, who had not found the net in the league since Sept. 1 but had scored in the Champions League, gave Real an ideal start by volleying home a cross from Alvaro Odriozola in the eighth minute.

Huesca, bottom of the table with a meagre seven points and without a win since the opening day of the season, did not lay down against the European champions though, and it took a flying save from Thibaut Courtois to prevent Ezequiel Avila levelling soon afterwards.

Bale was denied another goal in the second half by Huesca's keeper and the home side laid siege to Real's area in the final stages but fell short of an equaliser as Courtois tipped a dangerous free kick over the bar in stoppage time and Dani Carvajal made a frantic clearance.

Real's eighth win in nine games in all competitions under coach Santiago Solari saw them climb above Alaves into fourth in the standings on 26 points after 15 games, five behind leaders Barcelona. Reuters


Match preview

What time does it start?

Huesca vs Real Madrid kicks off at 3:15pm (GMT)

Where can I watch it?

The match will be shown live on Eleven Sports 1 from 3:10pm and on their La Liga TV channel from kick-off. Fans can also watch the match on Eleven Sports through iOS mobile and tablet apps as well as on Android mobiles.

Highlights will be shown at 10:45pm on Eleven Sports’ La Liga TV channel.

Player to watch…

Luka Modric: The Croatian broke Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi’s dominance over the Ballon d’Or by claiming the prize on Monday evening in Paris. The 33-year-old stated that the award capped a very special year for him, but Santiago Solari will need similar performances from Modric that saw him claim the award as Real Madrid look to get themselves back in contention in the title race. He delivered such a performance last weekend by helping a young midfield overwhelm Valencia, but that has been a rare sight for the Madrid faithful so far this campaign.

Form guide…

Huesca: DLDLLL

Real Madrid: WWLWWW

Odds…

Huesca to win: 15/2

Real Madrid to win: 3/10

Draw: 23/5

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Good afternoon and welcome to our live coverage of Huesca vs Real Madrid in La Liga.

Vithushan Ehantharajah9 December 2018 13:01
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The teams are in:

Callum Rice-Coates9 December 2018 14:34
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This, put simply, is a game Real Madrid must win. They have a chance to climb to fourth in La Liga after a slow start to the season, and their opposition today sit rock bottom of the table.

Huesca have just one win to their name since their promotion to the top tier. They have accumulated just seven points. A comfortable victory for Santiago Solari's side, then, should be an inevitability.

This has been a strange La Liga season, though. Another shock result may not be entirely out of the question.

Callum Rice-Coates9 December 2018 14:44
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  ↵

Callum Rice-Coates9 December 2018 14:54
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Newly-crowned Ballon d'Or winner Luka Modric starts for Real Madrid today. Regardless of the controversy surrounding the decision, the Croatian has enjoyed a superb 2018. He'll be hoping to dictate today's game from midfield, alongside Marcos Llorente, who makes just his second league start of the season.

Callum Rice-Coates9 December 2018 14:59
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Back in Madrid, the Bernabeu will play host to the Copa Libertadores final later today. For now, though, the focus is on northeastern Spain, where Real will play at the decidedly less glamorous Estadio El Alcoraz. It has a capacity of just 7,000, but the home fans are sure to make themselves heard.

Kick off is minutes away now.

Callum Rice-Coates9 December 2018 15:07
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The hosts get us underway on a particularly windy day in Aragon. The fans are up for this one.

Callum Rice-Coates9 December 2018 15:15
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Huesca 0-0 Real Madrid

2 minutes

Benzema nearly finds himself clean through after some quick thinking by Bale. The Welshman launches a throw into the path of his teammate, but the keeper is out quickly.

Callum Rice-Coates9 December 2018 15:17
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Huesca 0-0 Real Madrid

5 minutes

Some understandable nervousness at the back for Huesca. Vazquez drills a ball into the box and it is, eventually, cleared. Huesca look a bit tentative in the early stages, perhaps not surprising given the nature of the occasion. Fourteen years ago they were in the fourth tier. Now they're hosting the mighty Real Madrid.

Callum Rice-Coates9 December 2018 15:21
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Huesca 0-0 Real Madrid

6 minutes

Some encouragement for the hosts. They win a corner, which is swung in by Ferreiro and drops to an unmarked Etxeita at the back post. He heads just wide.

Callum Rice-Coates9 December 2018 15:22

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