Real Madrid took a big step towards the title in Spain, winning 3-1 in La Liga on Wednesday on the lawn of Osasuna. A meeting in which Karim Benzema missed… two penalties in seven minutes.
Like Paris Saint-Germain, Real Madrid will have the opportunity to pop the champagne on their next day of championships. Madrid’s men qualified for the semi-finals of the Champions League (the first leg on the lawn of Manchester City next Tuesday, to follow The Indian Paper 1), having to wait ten days, against Espanyol Barcelona on 30 April.
In the event of a win at Santiago-Bernabeu and barring an unlikely scenario, Carlo Ancelotti’s players will officially validate their league title, the 35th in their prestigious history. An anointing was expected and made possible by the new 3-1 success of Karim Benzema’s partners on the lawn of Osasuna. Who lived a private evening… rather the opposite.
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The first Madridista to miss two penalties in a La Liga match in 16 years
The 34-year-old, surrounded by formidable Madrid skipper Rodrigo and Marco Asensio, had a solid starting point in the game, especially a decisive pass to his credit from David Alaba (1-0, 12th) to the opener. But when Real responded with a quick draw from Ante Budimir (1-1, 13th) with Asensio (45th, 2-1), the French striker had not one… but two to widen the penalty gap. There were chances!
The first, missed by Sergio Herrera on the ground strike from the right in the 52nd minute, then the second in the 59th minute in a nearly identical attempt. Two failures in seven minutes for Benzema, 18 days after his failure in the same practice against Celta Vigo (he had converted two of his three penalties for the day).
According to Opta, Karim Benzema is the first player to miss two penalties in a La Liga match since Raul Tamudo against Betis Sevilla in April 2006. The Frenchman is also the Real Madrid player with the most number of penalty misses in a single season. Liga from 2005-06 (4/11). Two brutal figures, but “Nuve”, the author of an utterly exceptional 2021-22 year (39 goals and 14 assists in all competitions with Real now), will be quickly forgiven.