Match Report: Espanyol 1-4 Real Madrid
La Liga, Power8 Stadium
Cristiano Ronaldo’s seventh hat-trick of the season was all in vain as Barcelona’s victory at Atletico Madrid ensured the Catalans La Liga on Sunday.
A Barca victory ensured them a 23-rd Liga title but Madrid at least held their part of the bargain with a big win at Espanyol.
Ronaldo scored three, taking his tally to 45 for the season in the league and 310 club goals, surpassing Alfredo Di Stefano’s 307, while Marcelo bagged his first league goal of the season against Sergio’s in-form side.
Christian Stuani had the hosts on level terms after Keylor Navas, making his first away start in the league for Madrid, dropped a clanger in the build-up to the goal.
Madrid were convincing winners, however, and Ronaldo led by example with the perfect hat-trick – one with his left foot, one with his right and one with his head.
After a goalless first-half, in which Ronaldo had plenty of chances to break the deadlock, Madrid upped their gear knowing only a win would do in the race for the title and when Pepe broke free from the back and fed Karim Benzema, Ronaldo finished off the make it 1-0.
The hosts drew level when Stuani capitalised on Navas’ error but Marcelo fired Madrid back ahead soon after.
Ronaldo made the points all-but secure with his second of the match before James Rodriguez sent over a cross to the far post for him to finish and make it 4-1.