BARCELONA, Spain (AP) — Stymied by the goalkeeper, Vinícius Júnior turned playmaker to set up a late breakthrough and help Real Madrid win at Osasuna 2-0 in the Spanish league on Saturday.
Vinícius, back from a one-game suspension, led Madrid’s attack while Karim Benzema rested ahead of Tuesday’s game at Liverpool in the Champions League round of 16.
Vinícus has emerged as Madrid’s top scorer with 16 across all competitions. But he failed to beat Osasuna goalie Sergio Herrera on three one-on-one situations before assisting Federico Valverde in the 78th minute at El Sadar Stadium.
Luka Modric played Vinícius clear down the left side of the area. Two defenders hemmed him in, but the Brazil forward flipped a pass to Valverde arriving in a second wave to steer into the net.
Marco Asensio added a second goal in injury time after 18-year-old Álvaro Rodríguez stole the ball and assisted his fellow substitute.
“Vinícius is a player who always makes the difference,” Madrid coach Carlo Ancelotti said. “When we started playing more in open space in the second half that was when he took charge. He is a fantastic player, he doesn’t stop attacking, doesn’t stop dribbling at rivals, he is an incredible talent.
“This was an important win to keep us in the league race.”
The hard-fought victory closed Madrid’s gap with Barcelona to five points before the leader hosts Cadiz on Sunday.
Ancelotti was without three regular starters. Rodrygo started for Benzema. Eduardo Camavinga anchored the midfield with Aurélien Tchouaméni ill, and Dani Ceballos filled in for Toni Kroos, who also rested.
Osasuna, which drew at Madrid 1-1 in October, caused Madrid problems all game long with its defenders chasing the ball all over the pitch. Moi Gómez, Osasuna’s most incisive player, went close to scoring in the 63rd when the midfielder cut back outside the area and struck the post.
“It is too bad, we made a huge effort, but you have to be perfect to take points in a game like this,” said coach Jagoba Arrasate, whose Osasuna is in 10th place and has reached the Copa del Rey semifinals.
Osasuna goalie Herrera was poised to be the player of the match until Valverde finally beat him for his 12th goal of the campaign.
“We know that it is always tough to play here, against a team that always fights to the end,” Valverde said. “As the clock ticks down you feel the fatigue after so many games, but the goal set us on our way.”
An own goal in the final moments cost third-placed Real Sociedad a 1-1 draw at home with Celta Vigo.
Mikel Oyarzabal drove in a pass by Take Kubo to give Sociedad a fifth-minute lead. But Celta was gifted a stoppage-time equalizer when Sociedad defender Robin Le Normand inadvertently redirected a cross into his own net.
Sergio Canales set up one goal and scored another from the penalty spot to lead a 2-1 win over Valladolid and help fifth-placed Real Betis close to within one point of Atletico Madrid in fourth.
Canada forward Cyle Larin briefly pulled the visitors level in the 30th with his third goal in four appearances for Valladolid since arriving on loan from Club Brugge last month.
Mallorca rolled over 10-man Villarreal 4-2 for its biggest win since Javier Aguirre became the coach last year.
The team from the Balaeric Islands had never scored more than two in a game against a top-flight team since Aguirre took over in March 2022.
Trailing 1-0, Villarreal lost Manu Trigueros to a direct red card when he swiped at the face of a rival following a collision.
Midfielder Dani Rodríguez led Mallorca with two goals, both from headers.
More AP soccer: https://apnews.com/hub/soccer and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports
JOIN THE CONVERSATION
Conversations are opinions of our readers and are subject to the Code of Conduct . The Star does not endorse these opinions.
Read On "Welland Tribune"
Forsberg: Making sense of Grant Williams’ surprising DNP vs. Cavs originally appeared on NBC Sports BostonGrant Williams logged his first DNP in nearly two years during Wednesday’s win over the Cleveland Cavaliers, a surprising demotion for a player who had been a key bench contributor for much of the past two seasons. The Celtics were plus-4 in Williams’ bench-high 31 minutes, 37 seconds of action that night. Mazzulla also noted that offensive spacing was another reason for Williams’ DNP. That’s curious suggestion considering Williams is shooting 40.4 percent from beyond the 3-point arc this season. Williams had an opportunity to extend with the Celtics before the season but elected to chase a bigger payday.23 days ago emea tribune
Posey’s heartfelt message to Cousins 12 years after collision originally appeared on NBC Sports BayareaNearly 12 years ago, Giants fans watched in horror as the reigning NL Rookie of the Year suffered a gut-wrenching injury at home plate. Posey, now just a month shy of his 36th birthday, hasn’t personally spoken to Cousins since that day. AdvertisementIn his conversation with Baggarly, Posey revealed what he would say to Cousins if the two were to have a conversation today. He said he doesn’t believe the injury shortened his career, though Giants fans certainly wish their homegrown slugger still was on the field. AdvertisementDownload and follow the Giants Talk Podcast25 days ago emea tribune
The Athletic reported Monday that billionaire Jimmy Haslam and Haslam Sports Group have agreed to take over Marc Lasry’s ownership stake in the Milwaukee Bucks. AdvertisementJimmy Haslam, owner of the Cleveland Browns, has reportedly bought Marc Lasry’s share of the Milwaukee Bucks. Cleveland Browns owners Dee and Jimmy Haslam own the Cleveland Browns of the NFL and Columbus Crew of MLS. Jimmy Haslam briefly held an ownership stake with the Pittsburgh Steelers, purchased in 2008 before he took over the Browns. AdvertisementDOWNLOAD THE APP: Get the latest news, sports and moreThis article originally appeared on Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: Who are Jimmy and Dee Haslam, reported new co-owners of Bucks?25 days ago emea tribune
New court documents show that Rupert Murdoch and his top lieutenants at Fox News were aware that former President Trump’s claims of voter fraud in the 2020 election were false, but agreed to give them continued coverage in an effort to keep its unhappy viewers from fleeing. The stunning revelations based on deposition testimony were in a brief filed Monday in Delaware State Court by Dominion Voting Systems, the latest salvo in the company’s $1.6-billion defamation suit against the conservative news network. In his deposition, Murdoch acknowledged that he had the power to keep Trump lawyers Rudy Giuliani and Sidney Powell from appearing on Fox News, where they spread misinformation about election fraud and falsely accused Dominion of using its machines to manipulate votes. AdvertisementWhen asked as to whether he could have said to Fox News Media Chief Executive Suzanne Scott and the network’s hosts “stop putting Rudy Giuliani on the air,” Murdoch replied, “I could have. But I didn’t.”Fox News has maintained that its coverage and commentary of Trump’s false allegations were newsworthy and therefore protected under the 1st Amendment.25 days ago The San Diego Union-Tribune
The bill strips power uniquely held by Disney for over 50 years and enables more oversight by Mr DeSantis’ Republican-led legislature. AdvertisementIt precedes a likely 2024 presidential run by Mr DeSantis. Mr DeSantis announced appointments to the new board, including Martin Garcia, a Tampa lawyer and Republican donor whose firm contributed $50,000 (£41,467) to Mr DeSantis’ re-election campaign. The public feud between Mr DeSantis and Disney has helped elevate his profile as a potential 2024 Republican presidential candidate. But during a news conference on Monday, Mr DeSantis hinted he was still a fan of the Mouse.26 days ago emea tribune
President Biden should call off construction crews gathering at the southernmost edge of California’s coastline to erect a border wall that epitomizes Trump’s dystopian vision. It’s also a reminder of what the GOP could be, even as Democrats prove to be disappointing on border issues. Border Patrol stopped all activities during the pandemic and has kept the park closed, claiming that deteriorating barriers needed replacing. Trauma physicians in San Diego are already dealing with a surge in traumatic brain injuries and spinal injuries due to falls from the taller border wall built east of Friendship Park. Wall construction would damage the Mexican side of the binational garden because its roots extend into the U.S..26 days ago The San Diego Union-Tribune
In this grab taken from video provided by KOCO, a view of the damage to a property after severe storms, in Shawnee, Oklahoma, Feb, 26, 2023. (Uncredited/AP)Powerful storms with widespread wind gusts and reported tornadoes swept across Oklahoma and Kansas, leaving more than a dozen people injured, and some Michigan residents faced a fifth-straight day Monday without power following last week’s ice storm. AdvertisementAbout 20 miles (32 kilometers) south of Oklahoma City, the Norman Police Department responded Sunday night to storm damage on the south and eastern sides of Norman. AdvertisementA tornado touched down Sunday near Liberal, Kansas, the National Weather Service said, and more than a dozen homes were reported damaged, KSNW-TV reported. The Storm Prediction Center said that the severe weather threat remained Monday as thunderstorms were expected to produce damaging gusts across the Ohio Valley.26 days ago Chicago Tribune
Lillard tied Cleveland’s Donovan Mitchell for the most points in a game this season after Mitchell also scored 71 in a Jan. 2 win against Chicago. It brought me down from here to floor,” Lillard said gesturing from above his head and then dropping his hand. “I think any hooper enjoys those moments when you’re hot, you’re in attack mode, you’re feeling good,” Lillard said. Jerami Grant added 13 points for the Blazers, who led by as many as 23. “My mom calls me and says Dame Lillard tied your record … you gotta get 72 now,” Mitchell posted on Twitter with some laughing emojis.26 days ago News Tribune