Spanish La Liga
Levante1Real Madrid2

Levante 1-2 Real Madrid: Visitors win thanks to VAR penalties

Gareth Bale
Gareth Bale came off the bench and scored the winner

Real Madrid beat Levante thanks to two disputed penalties from Karim Benzema and Gareth Bale.

Benzema stepped up to score the opener after Luka Modric's cross hit the arms of Enis Bardhi, but Roger Marti deservedly equalised, having hit the post twice in the first half.

Real got another penalty for a Cheick Doukoure foul on Casemiro, which substitute Bale scored.

The visitors had defender Nacho sent off late on for two bookings.

Levante midfielder Ruben Rochina was dismissed from the bench with two minutes left after protesting against a refereeing decision. He had played the opening 60 minutes, picking up a booking for a foul, before being substituted off.

The result takes Real to within nine points of leaders Barcelona, going into two consecutive Clasicos.

They host Barca in the Copa del Rey semi-final second leg on Wednesday, and again in La Liga on Saturday.

VAR benefits Real in close game

Levante fans felt a real sense of injustice as their side, who drop to 13th in La Liga, lost after a commendable performance and whistled the referee at every opportunity.

Official Ignacio Iglesias Villanueva initially did not award a penalty when Luka Modric's cross hit the arms of Enis Bardhi, who had put it up to try to block his face.

He went over to a screen to watch the incident again, then gave the spot-kick which Benzema scored.

In the second half, Casemiro went down easily under pressure from Doukoure. Villanueva awarded the kick and, after discussions with the VAR officials, stuck with his decision - despite the Real Madrid midfielder appearing to dive.

To add to their grievances, they had two penalties turned down - for a Dani Carvajal foul on Jose Luis Morales and a Raphael Varane handball, with neither appearing to be referred by VAR.

Line-ups

Levante

  • 25Fernández
  • 18Cabaco
  • 14Nunes Vezo
  • 4Suárez Pier
  • 7Simon
  • 16RochinaBooked at 88minsSubstituted forDoukouréat 60'minutes
  • 24Campaña
  • 10BardhiSubstituted forVukcevicat 89'minutes
  • 22LunaBooked at 84mins
  • 9MartíBooked at 25minsSubstituted forDwamenaat 73'minutes
  • 11Morales

Substitutes

  • 5Doukouré
  • 6Rodríguez Benito
  • 13Olazábal
  • 17Vukcevic
  • 19López
  • 20Dwamena
  • 23Remeseiro Salgueiro

Real Madrid

  • 25Courtois
  • 2Carvajal
  • 5Varane
  • 6NachoBooked at 86mins
  • 23Reguilón
  • 10Modric
  • 14Casemiro
  • 8KroosSubstituted forValverdeat 69'minutes
  • 17VázquezBooked at 68mins
  • 9BenzemaSubstituted forBaleat 74'minutes
  • 28Vinícius JúniorSubstituted forAsensioat 83'minutes

Substitutes

  • 1Navas
  • 3Vallejo
  • 11Bale
  • 12Marcelo
  • 15Valverde
  • 20Asensio
  • 24Ceballos
Referee:
Ignacio Iglesias Villanueva
Attendance:
22,067

Match Stats

Home TeamLevanteAway TeamReal Madrid
Possession
Home39%
Away61%
Shots
Home11
Away19
Shots on Target
Home2
Away5
Corners
Home4
Away6
Fouls
Home17
Away11

Live Text

Match ends, Levante 1, Real Madrid 2.

Full Time

Second Half ends, Levante 1, Real Madrid 2.

Corner, Real Madrid. Conceded by Erick Cabaco.

Attempt blocked. Gareth Bale (Real Madrid) left footed shot from a difficult angle on the left is blocked. Assisted by Marco Asensio.

Luka Modric (Real Madrid) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Nikola Vukcevic (Levante).

Attempt missed. Federico Valverde (Real Madrid) right footed shot from outside the box is too high. Assisted by Daniel Carvajal.

Lucas Vázquez (Real Madrid) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Rober Pier (Levante).

Substitution

Substitution, Levante. Nikola Vukcevic replaces Enis Bardhi.

Dismissal

Second yellow card to Rubén Rochina (Levante).

Thibaut Courtois (Real Madrid) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Erick Cabaco (Levante).

Dismissal

Second yellow card to Nacho (Real Madrid) for a bad foul.

Foul by Nacho (Real Madrid).

Raphael Dwamena (Levante) wins a free kick on the right wing.

Booking

Antonio Luna (Levante) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Luka Modric (Real Madrid) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Antonio Luna (Levante).

Lucas Vázquez (Real Madrid) wins a free kick on the right wing.

Foul by José Campaña (Levante).

Substitution

Substitution, Real Madrid. Marco Asensio replaces Vinícius Júnior.

Booking

Pedro López (Levante) is shown the yellow card.

Lucas Vázquez (Real Madrid) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Enis Bardhi (Levante).

Attempt blocked. Gareth Bale (Real Madrid) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Casemiro.

Goal!

Goal! Levante 1, Real Madrid 2. Gareth Bale (Real Madrid) converts the penalty with a left footed shot to the bottom right corner.

Penalty Real Madrid. Casemiro draws a foul in the penalty area.

Penalty conceded by Cheick Doukouré (Levante) after a foul in the penalty area.

Attempt blocked. Raphael Varane (Real Madrid) header from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Luka Modric with a cross.

Corner, Real Madrid. Conceded by Enis Bardhi.

Foul by Lucas Vázquez (Real Madrid).

Antonio Luna (Levante) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Substitution

Substitution, Real Madrid. Gareth Bale replaces Karim Benzema because of an injury.

Substitution

Substitution, Levante. Raphael Dwamena replaces Roger Martí.

Attempt blocked. Karim Benzema (Real Madrid) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Vinícius Júnior.

Attempt saved. Vinícius Júnior (Real Madrid) right footed shot from the left side of the box is saved in the bottom right corner. Assisted by Lucas Vázquez with a through ball.

Foul by Daniel Carvajal (Real Madrid).

Enis Bardhi (Levante) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Substitution

Substitution, Real Madrid. Federico Valverde replaces Toni Kroos.

goal

Scores, Results & Fixtures

Sunday 24th February 2019

As It Stood

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Barcelona25176265254057
2Atl Madrid25148336171950
3Real Madrid25153743301348
4Getafe25109632221039
5Sevilla2510784032837
6Alavés2510782528-337
7Real Betis2510692930-136
8Real Sociedad249783025534
9Valencia2561542521433
10Ath Bilbao2571262528-333
11Eibar2571083335-231
12Leganés257992631-530
13Levante2586113745-830
14Espanyol2586112838-1030
15Girona246992534-927
16Real Valladolid2568111931-1226
17Celta Vigo2567123643-725
18Villarreal25411102633-723
19Rayo Vallecano2565142843-1523
20Huesca2547142441-1719
View full Spanish La Liga table

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