Madrid come from behind to see off Real Sociedad
Real Madrid vs Real Sociedad: match report; as it happened
Real Madrid came back from an early 1-0 deficit against Real Sociedad to run out 3-1 winners at the end, thanks to goals from Karim Benzema, Fede Valverde and Luka Modric.
The hosts found themselves 1-0 down after just two minutes, when Sociedad striker Willian latched on to a wayward Sergio Ramos back pass to round Courtois and score, stunning the home crowd who had barely warmed their seats.
Benzema levelled things up before the break, scoring with his chest from a textbook Modric free-kick delivery, before Valverde gave Los Blancos the lead in the 48th minute, with his long range strike helped in by a wicked deflection off a Sociedad defender.
Gareth Bale was introduced before 70 minutes amid loud jeers from the home crowd. But the whistling didn’t stop him putting in a decent showing in the final 20 minutes, during which he played his part in Madrid’s third goal. In the 74th minute, the Welshman found space to put a deep cross towards Benzema, allowing the centre forward to head the ball back to tee up Modric, who buried the ball into the left corner to put the game virtually beyond the visitors at 3-1.
The result puts Madrid level on 28 points with Barcelona, with Los Blancos edging into first place thanks to a one-goal advantage in goal difference.
Peep, peep, peep!!! It's all over, in the end a comfortable 3-1 victory for Madrid.
Bale almost scores all on his own! He beats one defender and then tries to toepoke the ball bast the oncoming keeper from an acute angle on the right, but it just won't drift over the line. A little big of magic from the Welshman.
Bale drives a low cross across the face of the goal but there is nobody there to get on the end of it. A few fans in the crowd stood up to applaud the Welshman's efforts.
Madrid look comfortable, passing and moving with ease until eventually Carvajal is dispossessed as he tries to shoot.
What a save from Courtois to deny Willian! He had to get low to touch that out for a corner, from which Sociedad can do nothing.
Hazard sets up Benzema, who shoots from distance! But it's drifted above the left upright.
Madrid break quicklym but after some dilly-dallying around the box, Kroos finally gets a shot off but it's high and wide.
GOAL MADRID!!! And wouldn't you know it: Bale has played his part in that third goal. Amid the whistles, the Welshman puts a deep cross towards Benzema. The frenchman heads the ball back to tee up Modric and the midfielder buries it.
Bale getting whistled every time he touches the ball.
Bale comes on for Rodrygo. The initial applause for the Brazilian is followed by loud jeers and whistles for the Welshman.
Bale is preparing to come on.
Hazard and Valverde link up again. This time Hazard shoots from just outside the area but it's saved by Remiro.
Odegaard shoots! But it's straight at Courtois.
Valverde passes to Hazard, who plays a clever one-two back to the Uruguayan that almost releases him in the box. But Remiro beats him to it to snuff out the danger.
Chance Rodrygo! The Brazilian is umarked in the box when a cross comes in. But he has to jump at an awkward angle to try to reach the ball with his head and can't get enough power and direction on it to trouble Remiro.
Gareth Bale is warming up on the sidelines, he's surely in for a few jeers and whistles if he comes on.
Goal Madrid!!! Valverde's shot from outside the box takes a very, very lucky deflection off a Sociedad defender and flys into the left corner. They all count though. 2-1 to the hosts!
Sociedad get the second half underway.
The teams are in the tunnel and ready to come back out.
Madrid dominated that first half with 64% of possession and seven shots on goal to Sociedad's four. Still the visitors have shown flashes of decent play and will fancy themselves to pull off another Bernabéu upset as they had done last season.
Ref blows his whistle. Half time!
Hazard again trying to hard to take the ball round the defenders when it may have been more sensible to pass.
GOAL BENZEMA!!! Textbook free kick from Modric on the right finds Benzema, who jumps high to chest the ball into the bottom right corner. That's his 10th league goal of the seasom.
Modric takes the free kick but can't find the head of a team mate and Sociedad clear their lines. Madrid still keeping the pressure on though.
Monreal has come in with a very dangerous challenge on Rodrygo again around the Sociedad corner flag. His high boot looked to make contact with Rodrygo's head. Madrid have a free kick.
Odegaard shoots from distance! Great effort from the Norweigan, who draws an equally great save from Courtois to stop the ball flying into the top corner.
Hazard draws two defenders, shifts to his right to tee himself up for a shot just inside the box. But he strikes the ball straight at Remiro in goal.
33-year-old Monreal has come in heavy from behind on 18-year-old Rodrygo. The young Brazilian is on the ground holding his back in quite some pain. He finally gets back up and Madrid play on from the free kick.
Hazard wins a corner on the left as tries to take on two defenders by the byline. Benzema gets his head on the end of the corner cross but Remiro saves with ease.
Oyarzabal has had to come off after receiving treatment. He managed to take a hard blow to the groin area but will come straignt back on as soon as play is stopped.
Mendy lets loose from distance and draws an "uh" from the crowd. Remiro had to dive low to save, decent effort from the full back.
Chance Sociedad!! They've nearly scored again on the back of some shambolic Madrid defending. Willian can't put the ball passed Courtois this time.
Mendy from the left delivers a deep cross towards Benzema, but the Frenchman can't connect well by the far post.
Portu comes in with a late challenge on Courtois as the goalkeeper slides to collect a ball with his back turned to the oncoming Sociedad attacker. Courtois winces as the ref fires a warning at Portu. He's lucky not to get a card. Needless
Chance Madrid!! Rodrygo squares to Benzema, who releases Hazard with a first time cutting pass. Hazard rounds one defender but drags the ball too far and can only blast it into the side-netting from a tight angle on the left. Nice link up play from the Madrid front trio.
Madrid pressing now in search of a quick response. Remeber they lost 2-0 here at home to Sociedad last season.
GOAL SOCIEDAD!!! The visitors have scored on the back of a major error by Sergio Ramos, who played a wayward backpass to Courtois. Willian latches onto the loose ball, rounds the keeper and slots it into the goal. That's the Brazilian's sixth goal of the season.
Almost ready to go here.
Rodrygo makes his fifth consecutive start for Madrid tonight after he made his debut for Brazil against Argentina last Friday. It's been a whirlwind few weeks for the 18-year-old winger. He joins Benzema and Hazard in Madrid's frontline tonight,
Real Sociedad have a chance to go second tonight after Atlético's tie in Granada. If they manage to win at the Bernabéu as they did last season, they'll jump one point ahead of the two Madrid clubs on 25 points.
In one of tonight's other LaLiga fixtures, Atlético have drawn 1-1 at Granada. Simeone's men took the lead through Lodi in the 60th minute, before Sanchez Barahona equalised seven minutes later. The result leaves Atléti level on 25 points with Real, however the latter now has two games in hand.
Real Sociedad teamsheet is in: Remiro, Zaldua, Llorente, Zubeldia, Aritz, Portu, Merino, Willian, Oyarzabal, Monreal, Odegaard.
It must be remembered that Sociedad managed to do the double over Madrid last season, winning 2-0 at the Bernabéu in January and 3-1 at home in May. It was their first win at the Bernabéu in 15 years.
“My ankle is much better, I hope to be at the Bernabeu on Saturday,” Martin Odeegaard said in radio interview earlier this week.
“I played through the pain against Levante and after I think it was the right decision to stop for a bit. Now I feel better.
“I haven't stopped working in order to return as soon as possible. Playing against Real Madrid is a special match, but I want to play every game.”
Madrid teamsheet is in: Courtois, Carvajal, Ramos, Varane, Hazard, Benzema, Modric, Casemiro, Valverde, Mendy, Rodrygo
There is one Sociedad player who is of special interest to Madridistas tonight, Norway's Martin Odegaard. Earlier this week, the Real Madrid loanee said he was hoping to play some part in the game against his parent club. He has missed Sociedad's last two fixtures with an ankle injury but could be back in the fold tonight.
Hello and welcome to our coverage of Real Madrd vs Real Sociedad in LaLiga matchday 13. It's one hour until kick off at the Santiago Bernabéu. In the meantime we'll be building up to the game here.