• Thursday, June 13, 2024
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Real Madrid win record 36th La Liga title

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Real Madrid won their record-extending 36th La Liga title on Saturday following Girona’s stunning 4-2 victory over local rivals Barcelona, which left Carlo Ancelotti’s side with an insurmountable lead in the standings.

With just four games remaining, Real Madrid soared to 87 points atop the table after their reserve players secured a 3-0 win against relegation-threatened Cadiz earlier in the day.

The result placed Los Blancos 13 points ahead of second-placed Girona and a commanding 14 points clear of third-placed Barcelona.

Girona’s remarkable triumph not only sealed the league title for Real Madrid but also marked a historic milestone for the Catalan club. Their unexpected victory secured their maiden qualification for the Champions League, a remarkable achievement considering it’s only their fourth season in Spain’s top flight.

Real Madrid coach Carlo Ancelotti rotated heavily ahead of the Champions League semi-final second leg clash with Bayern Munich next week, but his players still got the job done.

Brahim Diaz netted in the 51st minute to put Real Madrid ahead and then set up Jude Bellingham, with Joselu tapping home a third.

“We’ve had a spectacular Liga campaign,” Ancelotti told reporters.
“We’ve made few errors and the advantage is deserved.”

Real Madrid’s comfortable win over Cadiz sent them 14 points clear of last season’s champions Barcelona, in third, with only 12 left to play for.
Girona, second after their second 4-2 win over Barcelona this season, trail Madrid by 13 points.

“We leave our skins out there on the pitch to live moments like today’s,” Madrid striker Joselu told Real Madrid TV.

“There are young players who are very hungry for titles, veterans who are delighted to be here… and these are special moments.”

With the Bayern second leg in mind, Ancelotti only selected captain Nacho Fernandez from the starting line-up that earned a 2-2 draw in Bavaria this week.

Belgian goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois started for the first time after a nine-month lay off after a knee injury and kept a clean sheet.

Madrid midfielder Luka Modric became the oldest player to appear for the club in La Liga, at 38 years and 238 days, breaking late Hungarian great Ferenc Puskas’ record from 1965 by five days.

The visitors, 18th and still battling to stay up, shaded the first half but Madrid’s goals came in the second.

Courtois made a superb save to deny Chris Ramos early in the second half and Madrid took the lead immediately afterwards.

Diaz received from the evergreen Modric on the edge of the area, turned slickly and curled an effort into the top corner.

Bellingham, on as a substitute for Turkish teenager Arda Guler, added the second soon after entering the fray at the end of a fine team move.

It was the England international’s 18th league goal of the season, keeping him in contention to finish as the top scorer.

Madrid put the cherry on their cake after a superb run by Nacho. Poised to depart at the end of the season, the Spaniard was hailed by the Bernabeu after setting up Joselu for a simple finish in stoppage time.