Karim Benzema scored twice as Real Madrid recovered from a poor first half to beat Eibar 2-1 at home in the Spanish league on Saturday.

By Associated Press
April 06, 2019

MADRID (AP) Karim Benzema scored twice as Real Madrid recovered from a poor first half to beat Eibar 2-1 at home in the Spanish league on Saturday.

The French striker canceled out an opening goal by Eibar's Marc Cardona before grabbing the winner in the 81st minute.

Benzema has been Madrid's best player in an otherwise disappointing season, when most of his teammates have played poorly. He has 26 goals in all competitions, including Madrid's last four goals. He netted a late winner for a 3-2 victory over Huesca last weekend and scored in a 2-1 loss at Valencia on Wednesday.

Madrid was heading toward another defeat after a first half that Eibar dictated, helped by the hosts' sloppy passing and lax defending.

After threatening with several dangerous crosses, Eibar went ahead five minutes before halftime after a slick buildup that involved four players.

Jose Angel Valdes exchanged passes with Marc Cucurella before finding Gonzalo Escalante in the area. Escalante then slid a pass through four Madrid defenders to the far post, where Cardona chipped it over sprawling goalkeeper Keylor Navas.

Madrid's fed-up fans jeered their team at several moments in the first half, but most of their frustration was directed at Gareth Bale, who earned whistles for a poor shot, a bad pass and for repeatedly being caught offside.

Eibar lost center back Ivan Ramis to an apparent leg injury, just before Benzema leveled in the 59th when he headed in a cross by Marco Asensio.

Madrid improved after the goal, and Benzema completed the turnaround when he outjumped his marker to head in a cross by substitute Toni Kroos.

Benzema had three chances to score a third goal, including one that hit the upright.

Madrid remained in third place, at 10 points behind leader Barcelona, which hosts second-placed Atletico Madrid later.

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HOLE YARDS PAR R1 R2 R3 R4
OUT
HOLE YARDS PAR R1 R2 R3 R4
IN
Eagle (-2)
Birdie (-1)
Bogey (+1)
Double Bogey (+2)