Madrid late show stuns Valencia

Real Madrid scored twice in the final six minutes to beat Valencia 4-1 on Saturday and close the gap on their third-placed opponents in La Liga.

Santi Mina pulled one back for the hosts after Madrid had taken the lead through two Cristiano Ronaldo penalties, but Marcelo stepped up to the plate in the final 10 minutes, scoring a 'golazo', before setting up Toni Kroos' clincher.

Los Blancos brought back Marcelo, Casemiro, Kroos, Cristiano Ronaldo and Gareth Bale for the trip to Valencia, whose defensive crisis for Valencia saw former Arsenal midfielder Francis Coquelin drafted in at centre-back.

Madrid had not won at Mestalla in La Liga for five years and could only draw 2-2 with Marcelino's side at home, but Martin Montoya awarded the visitors two gifts.

His two challenges on Ronaldo and Karim Benzema were poorly timed, allowing the former to net two penalties either side of Neto, the first of which was his 100th in all competitions. 

Los Che, for their part, had their fair share of shooting opportunities, but Keylor Navas was on hand to keep out efforts from Gonzalo Guedes and Geoffrey Kondogbia, while Rodrigo Moreno should've done better from a Mina cross.

Valencia piled on even more pressure at the start of the second half, and they got their just rewards when Mina nodded in a corner on the hour mark.

However, the home team would regret Dani Parejo scuffing a shot from close-range, the Merengues youth product having been teed up in the box, with only Keylor to beat.

Ronaldo was denied his hat-trick by some perfectly-timed defending from a low cross, and it was left to Marcelo to kill the match off with a surging run down the left, before cutting inside and striking hard and low past Neto.

If that wasn't enough, the Brazilian turned provider with another lung-bursting display on the wing. He then squared for Kroos, who interchanged with Ronaldo and then drilled a fine shot into the goalkeeper's bottom right.

The result leaves Madrid only two points behind Los Che in the race for automatic Champions League qualification with a game in hand.

Valencia 1-4 Real Madrid

Mina 58 (V) Ronaldo pen 16, pen 38, Marcelo 84, Kroos 89 (RM)

Valencia: Neto; Montoya, Garay, Coquelin, Lato (Pereira 77); Guedes (Soler 46), Parejo, Kondogbia, Gaya; Mina, Rodrigo (Zaza 75)

Real Madrid: Keylor; Carvajal, Varane, Vallejo, Marcelo; Modric (Kovacic 88), Casemiro, Kroos; Bale (Vazquez 69), Benzema (Asensio 78), Ronaldo

Referee: Estrada Fernandez

La Liga - Club News