Real Madrid demolished Deportivo de La Coruña 7-1 at the Bernabeu to claim a vital three points and ease the pressure on under-fire boss Zinedine Zidane.
Real Madrid thrashed Deportivo de La Coruña 7-1 at the Bernabeu to claim a vital three points and ease the pressure on under-fire boss Zinedine Zidane.
Madrid headed into the game having failed to win any of their last three league games, and it was Deportivo who took a shock lead in the 23rd minute through a Lopez tap in. Real deservedly equalized in the 23rd minute however, thanks to Nacho's curling effort. Gareth Bale then grabbed two goals, his first a sumptuous left-footed curler (42) and his second a header (58).
Modric finished off a flowing move with a fine strike in the 68th minute, and Ronaldo scored two (78, 84) to lift his goals tally to six for the season, before Nacho scored his second and Madrid's seventh minutes from time.
Following their fourth defeat in five games, Deportivo remain in 18th place two points off safety. Madrid climb up to 4th in the table, but still remain a massive 16 points behind leaders Barcelona.
Madrid boss Zinedine Zidane opted to make one change from the side which lost 1-0 to Villarreal last weekend, with 20-year-old Borja Mayoral coming in for Isco. Karim Benzema made a return to the Real bench having recovered from a hamstring injury, while Sergio Ramos remained out with a calf problem.
Deportivo boss Cristobal Parralo made two injury-enforced changes from the side who were defeated 2-1 by Valencia last weekend: Raul Albentosa and Sidnei were replaced by Aldo One and Fabian Schar in the centre of the Branquiazuis' defense.
Madrid - who were closer to 18th place Deportivo than league leaders Barcelona heading into the game - carved out their first opportunity of the match in the 4th minute. Gareth Bale did well on the right to whip in a dangerous cross which was met by Ronaldo at the far post, but the Portuguese international was unable to direct his header on goal and his effort flew over the bar from eight yards out.
Ruben Martinez was forced into his first save just a minute later. Modric cut in a low cross which found Mayoral on the edge of the Depor box, the Spaniard hit a powerful shot but it was too close to Martinez and the keeper managed to make a comfortable save to his right.
After the fast-paced start from Los Blancos, Deportivo had started to grow into the game and it was the 18th-placed side who were to take a shock lead in the 23rd minute of the game.
Andonde flicked a header on to Perez on the left, the on-loan Arsenal forward drove to the byline and cut the ball back across goal, leaving Adrian with a simple finish at the back post.
Real were close to equalizing just two minutes later. Marcelo's cross from the left found a leaping Ronaldo at the far post, the 32-year-old powered his header towards goal, but Ruben managed to palm it away.
Los Blancos came even closer to scoring in the 30th minute. Marcelo was again involved, this time the Brazilian's fierce shot nearly squirmed past Ruben, but the ball bounced off the post and into the hands of the keeper.
Los Blancos did manage to grab their deserved equaliser in the 32nd minute. After a quick corner on the right, Nacho collected a one-two with the heavily involved Marcelo and curled his shot past Ruben and into the far corner.
Three minutes before half-time and Zidane's side took the lead. Marcelo got free down the left and his subsequent looping cross found Bale around 10 yards out on the right. The Welshman nudged the ball to past Andone and curled a sumptuous left-footed effort past the helpless Ruben and into the top corner.
Madrid started off the second-half on the front foot and nearly made it three in the 52nd minute. Kroos played in Marcelo on the edge of the box, the Brazilian powered a low drive across goal which just missed the sliding Mayoral.
Los Blancos' intense pressure told eventually, and the 5th-placed La Liga side scored their third goal in the 58th minute. Kroos whipped in a corner from the left, and Bale leapt highest to nod in his second of the game from six yards out.
Madrid's fourth goal came in the 68th minute. Zidane's side countered through Ronaldo, who played in Modric on the edge of Deportivo's box, the Croatian international curled his effort past Ruben and into the bottom corner.
10 minutes later and it was 5-1, with Ronaldo on hand to finish at the back post following Casemiro's cross from the right. The Portugal international then scored his sixth La Liga goal of the season in the 84th minute. The 32-year-old bravely met Vasquez's cross from the right and looped his header past Ruben from six yards out.
Madrid weren't finished there and, having failed to score in their last two games at home, Zidane's side made it 7-1 in the 88th minute. A corner from the right deflected off a number of bodies before finding Nacho ten yards out, who turned sharply and finished emphatically to claim his second goal of the game.