MADRID (Dispatches) - Real Madrid were held to a 3-3 draw away to Levante on Sunday in a chaotic and entertaining game in Valencia, which highlighted that Carlo Ancelotti’s side needs to tighten up in defense.
Gareth Bale opened the scoring for Madrid in the fifth minute after good work from Karim Benzema, but Levante turned things around at the start of the second half thanks to Roger Marti, whose shot had enough power to beat Thibaut Courtois, and Jose Campana, who scored an excellent volley in the 55th minute.
Vinicius Jr equalized in the 74th minute, but the Real Madrid defense went missing four minutes later to allow Rober Pier to score from close range after a free-kick.
There was still time for more drama as Vinicius’ second of the game made it 3-3 with five minutes left and Levante keeper Aitor Fernandez was sent off in the 87th minute, meaning defender Ruben Vezo had to go in goal for the last three minutes and six minutes of injury time.
Vezo may have expected Real Madrid to lay siege to his goal, but the defender was relatively untroubled in those nine minutes.
Atletico Madrid made it two wins from two games but found it harder than expected against Elche in the first game with fans back in the Wanda Metropolitano Stadium since March 2020.
New Atletico signing Rodrigo de Paul was decisive in the win, after gaining possession in the middle of the pitch and then setting Angel Correa up to score the game’s only goal.
Correa has scored all three of Atletico’s goals in the new season, once again justifying Diego Simeone’s decision to start him ahead of Luis Suarez.
Memphis Depay’s first goal for FC Barcelona saved a point for his side after they had been outplayed for 70 minutes by Athletic Club Bilbao on Saturday.