Bellingham's strike hands Real comeback win over Barcelona

April 22, 2024 11:33 am

[Source: Reuters]

LaLiga leaders Real Madrid’s pursuit of a record-extending 36th Spanish title gathered momentum after Jude Bellingham scored a goal in added time to secure a 3-2 comeback win over Barcelona this morning.

Real twice fought back from a goal down before Bellingham smashed in the winner at the far post from about six yards out to beat the champions for a fourth successive time. The result left second-placed Barca 11 points adrift of the leaders with six games left.

Barca were left licking their wounds after being knocked out of the Champions League on Tuesday in a heartbreaking 4-1 defeat against Paris St Germain.

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Real’s win, on the other hand, ended a perfect week for Carlo Ancelotti’s side after they advanced to the Champions League semi-finals on Wednesday after beating holders Manchester City on penalties.

“What a great night for being a Real Madrid fan, it’s incredible,” Luka Modric told Real Madrid TV.

“It’s a win that edges us closer to the title, it’s what we want. It was a great game, we never stopped believing. We were behind twice but kept fighting, playing well, pressing and in the end we came back time and time again.”

Barca took the lead in the sixth minute when Andreas Christensen headed in following a corner after Real goalkeeper Andriy Lunin failed to clear the cross.

But Real Madrid piled on the pressure and Vinicius Jr equalised 12 minutes later from the penalty spot after Lucas Vazquez was fouled inside the box after dribbling past two defenders.

Barcelona complained as the match was paused for several minutes as the VAR tried to determine whether a Lamine Yamal effort had crossed the goal line, but it couldn’t find a clear camera angle and the decision not to award a goal stood.

LaLiga is the only major European league not to use goal-line technology.

Wasteful Real dominated the second half but missed several chances and allowed substitute Fermin Lopez to give the visitors the lead again in the 69th minute from a rebound, but Real hit back with a Lucas Vazquez volley four minutes later.