Real Madrid 1-1 Real Sociedad: result, summary, goals
Real Madrid 1-1 Real Sociedad: as it happened
On the whistle match report
Real Madrid forward Vinicius Jr came off the bench to snatch a 1-1 draw at home to Real Sociedad on Monday although the Spanish champions still lost momentum in the title race ahead of next week's showdown at leaders Atlético Madrid.
Still missing key players due to a litany of injuries, Zinedine Zidane's Madrid side hit the bar twice in the first half but the visitors took the lead in the 55th minute with a towering header from forward Portu.
Toni Kroos came close to levelling with a curling effort that just missed the target but Brazilian youngster Vinicius eventually found an equaliser in the 89th minute with a deflected effort from inside the area.
Madrid had the chance to move within three points of Atleti ahead of Sunday's derby but the draw left them third on 53 points from 25 games, level with second-placed Barcelona and five adrift of Diego Simeone's leaders, who have a game in hand. Sociedad stay fifth on 42 points. (Richard Martin reporting)
Both teams will likely come away from this game disappointed.
Real Madrid dropped two points in their chase for the title, and ahead of their derby against Atleti.
La Real had a big three points in their grasp before a late Vinicius strike.
Peep, peep, peeeeep!! The game ends all square.
Two corner in quick succession are cleared away by La Real. It looks like the increased tempo from Zidane's side may have happened too late to get them the three points.
CHANCE!! Duro rises at the back post to head in an excellent Nacho cross (following a surprisingly effective pirouette from the defender).
Three minutes added
Duro tries his luck and that is quickly followed by an effort from Casemiro which is deflected wide for a corner.
Nothing comes from the corner and time is ticking away for the champions.
What to do...
Another change for Alguacil sees Munoz replace Silva
CLOSE! Rodrygo and Valverde link up neatly and the effort from the young Brazilian flies just wide.
And a break almost hurts Madrid. Or it could have had Oyarzabal found a keen Isak heading forwards against a limited Madrid backline.
Hosts regroup and start their attack again.
Other than Isak, who is hanging around just inside his own half, there are 10 black shirts in and around the away penalty area.
It's all about holding on and hitting on the break now it seems.
Vinicius to Mendy to Kroos and almost a chance fashioned by the hosts who are now almost exclusively camped in the Sociedad half.
Valverde on for Modric
Vini looks to sprint away from the covering Gorosabel and there was a reminder of the Piqué on Mbappé moment as he held onto the Brazilian's disappearing shirt.
Easy yellow for the ref to hand out.
CLOSE!! Casemiro should have directed his header on goal but actually was offside before he moved into position.
Lucas is at full stretch to get on a lofted Kroos ball into the area. The winger-turned-full-back does well to keep the play going but can't find a teammate and La Real break away.
As it stands...
Barrenetxea on for the impressive Portu, who appears to be injured. Looked like a muscle pain so we'll have to see later how serious.
Duro the latest to challenge for a header amongst several defenders and it's over the bar.
Madrid growing in an attacking presence now, possibly as La Real sit back further on the lead.
Crosses coming in thick and fast but so far being covered well.
CLOSE!! Casemiro rises really well at the back post to meet a Lucas cross. His header is hard and directed downwards but just the wrong side of the post.
Definitely sensing a gear-shift from the hosts.
On the hour Zidane is making three switches:
Vinicius, Rodrygo and Hugo Duro on for Mariano, Asensio and Isco
CHANCE!! That should have been two!
Slack play from Nacho allows space for Portu to interceot and cross. Isak is inches away from connecting and pushing it home.
More pressure from the visitors who have started this second half brightly.
Corner from Oyarzabal is outswinging this time but it's a Modric head that gets it away. Madrid yet to find their second half feet.
More invention this time from Sociedad as the corner is driven hard and low to Isak's feet near the penalty spot as focus was drawn to goal runners.
The striker's first touch gives Nacho the chance to close him down and block the shot, which he does well.
A dangerous cross from Monreal wide on the left puts Nacho under a lot of pressure but the Spaniard volleys away for a corner.
From that dead ball, a crowd of players causes problems for Courtois to punch clear and Monreal almost directs an overhead kick goalwards.
Looks like the whistle went for a foul somewhere in there so it wouldn't have counted.
Madrid get us moving and are forced all the way back to Courtois.
The Belgian clears and hands possession back to the visitors with Mariano unable to catch and keep the ball in play.
Peeep! We're off again...
The players are heading back out...
Last line of defence
Courtois and Remiro have had limited action - certainly the visting keeper having the busier of the first half - but how have they compared over the LaLiga season so far.
Thanks to our friends at SofaScore, we can have a look.
Most notable, possibly, is that it's the Real Madrid man who has been making more saves on average per game.
Mariano almost doing what he's paid to.
So, no goals but there have been plenty of chances and dangerous positions created that could have altered that significantly.
As per in the final minute of play, La Real wasted a good opportunity on the break by Isak failing to pick the right pass (or going it alone) when it really counted. This happened a number of times.
Madrid have come the closest to actually scoring - Mariano's header off the bar with Remiro stranded - and there has been some tidy play in and around the area that, on another day, could have borne fruit.
Dare I say it, goals are coming...
Peeep! The whistle goes and the players head towards the changing rooms.
We'll have one added minute...
Brilliant running from Isak has Kroos chasing at his heels as La Real break with purpose again.
The forward looks across goal for support and then plays a weak ball that is easily taken away by Nacho. More disappointment with that final decision.
SAVE! Remiro called into action as Modric follows up a cheeky nutmeg with a booming strike from distance.
It's close enough to the keeper not to cause too much of a problem, but too powerful for him to choose catch over block.
A four-on-three break for La Real should have at least seen Courtois troubled.
In the end, Isak hesitated at the key moment and that allowed the home defence to return in sufficient numbers to cancel out the threat from Silva, Portu and Oyarzabal.
CHANCE!! Kroos sprints onto a deft layoff from Isco who was found at the top of the area by Mendy.
A shoulder drop from the German gets him to the byline but he can't get the ball across the covering players, including Remiro. Corner.
The corner comes to nothing, well nothing for the Basque side anyway. Mariano gets a chance to sprint clear on the counter and although jinking nicely inside and out to confuse the covering Oyarzabal, he decides to shoot from am almost impossible location for scoring. It's well wide.
Isak looking to get on the scoresheet in this first half hits the dead ball, but it's straight into the wall and out for a corner.
No sooner had Asensio been flagged in the opposition area, he's back making a desperate challenge in his own.
Free-kick handed to La Real from that and it's not far from the Madrid area, fairly central, decent chance for a strike at goal.
Another ball played into the area by Madrid to cause some problems. Nothing doing as Asensio was flagged for offside.
CLOSE! As the ball drops to Casemiro several metres outside the area he only had one thing in mind: putting his boot through it as fast as possible.
It's a lovely strike and one that Remiro watches closely as it slides just wide of the far post.
Nacho gets very excited to make his presence known at the other end as he bursts into La Real's area.
A watchful Zubeldia takes care of his ideas.
CLANG! Mariano gets his head to a clever Lucas chip to the back post but an immediate deflection off the challenging defender bounces it onto the bar.
CHANCE! The follow up is controlled well by Asensio who drills an effort low but a sprawling leg deflects wide.
Isak still to make any meaningful contribution thus far but he, and Madrid's backline, will be conscious that he hasn't failed to score since 3 January!
It only takes a minute, as some lads once sang.
Silva heads down the right side with purpose and tries to feed Portu into space ahead of him. Nacho does well to read the idea and step in before playing it back for Courtois to clear.
Asensio again delivers, this time from wide on the left and the ball somehow lands in front of Remiro, then bouncing away to relative safety.
Asensio attempts to dink the ball forward from deep but it was always going to be a big ask for Mariano to make anything from it under pressure at that angle.
Talking of the striker, he and opposite number Isak are yet to really get into this game, although have been moving well off the ball.
More very nice play from Oyarzabal, this time with Silva almost opens up Madrid at the back. A blocked low cross then allows the hosts to head quickly upfield.
Real Sociedad's Ander Guevara in action early on
Kroos delivers and free-kick into the area and following its clearance, Isco gets another chance to do similarly from the other side. A visiting head deals with the danger and the counter is on.
Good covering from speedy white shirted players ensures the ball gets nowhere near Courtois.
Mendy tries his luck against two covering players just outside La Real's area but he lacks the trickery needed and Portu comes away with the ball.
Penalty shout potential there as some lovely play between Monreal and Oyarzabal has the defender going over Casemiro's challenging leg. Flag up for offside but I'm surprised that wasn't reviewed.
A sloppy no-look pass from Casemiro in the centre of the pitch hands Oyarzabal a chance to attack but the 23-year old gives it away just as quickly.
Both teams trying to find some flow.
Madrid's first knock about is nice and tidy, Asensio looking very keen to get on the ball - a couple of delicious touches to boot - but the play breaks down as an overhit pass into the area runs out.
Real Sociedad get us going, playing from right to left as we watch on in their black away shirts with redish trim.
An early spell of possession has most of the players getting a touch before a loose ball is picked up by Isco.
Peeeep! We are underway.
The anthem is belting out across an empty Alfredo di Stéfano Stadium as the players take to the field for their final preparations.
It's almost time...
37-year-old Jesus Gil Manzano is in charge of procedings this evening, along with his assistants on either side of the pitch an those watching slo-mo replays in a little box somewhere.
Manzano has been officiating in LaLiga since 2012 and part of the FIFA group of refs since 2014.
Goals spread: Real Sociedad
Imanol Alguacil must be expecting goals tonight from his side. Isak clearly leads the way in LaLiga for the team but Oyarzabal and Portu have been getting involved well.
And against a backline that has two of its main stars missing, all the more confident they will be.
Goals spread: Real Madrid
Where is Zizou hoping to get goals from tonight? Well, in the absence of Benzema he is desperately looking all over the pitch.
Casemiro has been a handy contributor but can the Isco-Mariano-Asensio threesome prove fruitful? We'll see shortly.
(Graphic from SofaScore)
Merino out, Silva back
Four changes from the goalless Europa League second leg at Old Trafford as Le Normand, Monreal, Silva and Portu come in.
Merino is suspended and Zaldua remains out, the latter giving more time to Gorosabel.
Clearly one of the biggest threats to Madrid's weakened backline is the man that will lead the visitors' attack, Isak. Here he is scoring in the capital.
Isco and Mariano start
Zidane has continued a recent trend of giving the two almost forgotten men a chance to shine. Isco is a bit of a cult hero and has the potential to open up defences with the drop of a shoulder or a flick of his talented feet.
Mariano returned to Madrid to take some of the goal-scoring pressure off Karim Benzema. We've not seen much of that to date, but signs must be relatively good in training.
The team is out warming up...
Real Sociedad: starting XI
Remiro; Gorosabel, Zubeldia, Le Normand, Monreal; Guevara, Zubimendi, Silva; Portu, Oyarzabal, Isak
Real Madrid: starting XI
Courtois, Lucas, Varane, Nacho, Mendy, Casemiro, Kroos, Modric, Isco, Asensio, Mariano
OK, it appears that team news is incoming. First up, our hosts at the Di Stefano...
La Real target all three points
Most LaLiga sides would be more than pleased to come away from the reigning champions' home patch with a point. But that's not necessarily the case for Sociedad tonight.
They're here for a win, and there are plenty of reasons to think they can do it too.
Capital ready for action
Do you like to see the actual shirts that the players will wear? Do you like to step inside where they get prepared?
Well Real Madrid's social media team are clearly on your wavelength.
The royal head-to-head
It's maybe not surprising that tonight's illustrious hosts have the upper hand on the visitors but as you'll see from the rate of goals scored and conceded, we are likely to have a tight game on our hands.
Where they sit: Real Sociedad
From their current position, La Real will be disappointed if they are not playing in European competition once again next season.
Although fifth, there is a seven-point gap to the Champions League spots and so keeping between the Sevilla clubs may be the best they can do. And that would be impressive enough all things considered.
Where they sit: Real Madrid
After Atlético and Barcelona won their weekend matches, a slip up at home would be a massive blow to Madrid's hopes of retaining their title.
In recent weeks, thanks to Diego Simeone's side dropping points unexpectedly, both their rivals now have a sniff at the domestic crown. But they have to keep up the pace.
A win for the capital side tonight takes them back to within three points of the leaders, having played a game more.
La Real in the mood
A lot of focus on speedy footwork going on in Sunday's session for the Basque squad.
Los Blancos at work
Zidane had his players hard at it ahead of this huge game. More about what this encounter means to both clubs coming up.
Real Madrid vs Real Sociedad: welcome
Hello and a very warm welcome to a chilly Spanish capital where Real Madrid host Real Sociedad at the Estadio Alfredo Di Stéfano.
In what is a rather unusual timeslot for the champions, kick-off here will be at 21:00 CET and our build-up starts now.