Sanish La Liga champions Real Madrid scored two first half goals to consign Barcelona to a third straight el clasico loss and move top of the league with a 2-1 victory.
An entertaining match in which the visitors did not do much wrong, Karim Benzema and Toni Kroos scored to end Barca’s 19-match unbeaten league run.
Real Madrid played on the counter just like thy did against Liverpool in midweek and scored on 14 minutes when Benzema flicked in Lucas Vazquez’s cutback for his 19th goal of the season.
The Merengues doubled their lead against the run of play in the 28th minute when Kroos’ free kick deflected into the net, his first free kick goal in el Clasico.
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Barcelona dominated the end of the first half and
continued at the restart but the Catalans had to wait until the 60th minute for
the breakthrough. Oscar Mingueza dispatched Jordi Alba’s low cross to raise the
Real Madrid had several opportunities to extend their lead but could not and had Casemiro sent off in the 90th minute.
Barcelona also had a penalty shout waved off and should have equalized in the last minute. Substitute Ilaiz Moriba’s shot cannoned off the bar in the last minute of added time and Real escaped with a precious win that extended their unbeaten run to ten matches.
Real Madrid have amassed 66 points and completed a league double over third placed Barcelona, a first in since 2008.