Kroos gives Real Madrid late win and top spot

Real Madrid went top of the Spanish Liga Saturday with a late 2-1 defeat of lively Celta Vigo, with Toni Kroos hitting the winner nine minutes from time.

Later on, Atletico Madrid continued their flat start to the season with a 0-0 draw at dogged neighbours Leganes. 

Atletico dominated from start to finish but were foiled time and again by Leganes' promising keeper Jon Serrantes.

"We created enough chnces tonight to have won easily. But we just could not put them away," Atletico's veteran striker Fernando Torres said.

Torres and company have just two points from their two matches and have scored only one goal. In contrast, Leganes - who are in the top flight for the very first time - have four points.

Atletico are already four points behind neighbours Real, who had to dig deep to beat Celta 2-1.

Alvaro Morata gave The Whites - who were without Cristiano Ronaldo again - the lead on the hour, despite a strong suspicion of offside, only for Fabian Orellana to quickly level for Celta with a powerful high drive.

Real then besieged the Celta goal and Kroos made it 2-1 with a precise shot which went in off the post after good work down the right by Lucas Vazquez.

"We just about deserved to win today, in my view," Real's Vazquez said.

"It's true that Celta played well, but we dominated for most of the match and created more chances than them."

Zinedine Zidane's team are the first side in La Liga to score their second win and move on to six points.

"The key today, I think, was that the players believed in themselves," Zidane said.

"When things were not going well for us, at 0-0 then at 1-1, the boys showed a lot of self-belief and ambition ... They were never going to accept a draw today."

Meanwhile, Celta striker Iago Aspas claimed that a draw would have been a fairer result.

"I think a draw would not have been unfair today. We worked hard and played well, but Real are a very professional team and always try to win."

Barcelona will be trying to keep up with Real Sunday by winning at Athletic Bilbao.

Earlier on, Valencia's poor start continued with a second defeat, 1-0 at hard-working Eibar.

Valencia went into the match without attack leader Paco Alcacer, who has reportedly asked to be allowed to join Barcelona.

Without the Spain striker - and with Portugal veteran Nani making a modest debut - Los Ches distinctly lacked a cutting edge up front.

The only goal came in the 61st minute, when Eibar were given a questionable penalty for an alleged handball by Valencia defender Aymen Abdennour.

Goalkeepeer Mathew Ryan managed to save Pedro Leon's spot-kick, but Leon put away the rebound to make it 1-0.

The defeat left Valencia bottom of the table after two games and possibly facing the same kind of grim relegation struggle as last season.

"The penalty was a strange decision, to say the least," Valencia's embattled coach Pako Ayesteran said.

"We did not play too badly today, but we had no luck at all on the field."

Eibar now have three points.

Real Sociedad also enjoyed their first win, 2-0 at local rivals Osasuna, thanks to an opener from Juanmi followed by an own goal from Osasuna's Unai Garcia.

"It's wonderful to get our first points," Juanmi said.

"We put in a really solid performance today and we were by far the better team, I think. This win was completely deserved."

Last update: Sun, 28/08/2016 - 00:38

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