Thibaut Courtois’ spectacular penalty save was not sufficient to maintain an error-prone Actual Madrid from stumbling once more in its Spanish league title protection.
Madrid misplaced 2-1 at dwelling to Levante on Saturday in a match that the defending champions performed with 10 males from the eighth minute when defender Éder Militão was despatched off.
With the rating stage at 1-1 within the second half, Courtois stopped Roger Martí’s penalty. The loud smack that the impression of the ball made when Courtois repelled it with one hand may very well be heard throughout Madrid’s Alfredo di Stéfano Stadium, which like all stadiums in Spain is devoid of followers because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
However Courtois couldn’t deny Martí within the 78th when the ahead acquired a cross after a sensible staff transfer executed after a nook kick and rifled the ball dwelling.
“We received a purple card within the eighth minute, that made all of it far more difficult,” Courtois stated. “It was too unhealthy to concede that purpose from a nook. We’ve got to maintain preventing. The league goes till Might, however (Atlético) retains on successful.”
Second-place Madrid’s first loss in 10 rounds left it seven factors adrift of front-runner Atlético Madrid, which has two extra video games nonetheless to play. Atlético will take a seven-round successful streak to Cádiz on Sunday.
Militão, beginning instead of the injured Sergio Ramos, left his aspect a person down when he fouled Sergio León from behind on a counterattack with solely the goalkeeper to beat. The referee initially awarded a yellow card however modified it for a purple after consulting a video replay.
Regardless of shedding a participant, Marco Asensio put Madrid forward within the 13th when he was launched on a counterattack with Toni Kroos’ wonderful cross.
However Levante imposed its numerical benefit the remainder of the way in which and loved all of the clear scoring probabilities.
Levante ahead José Morales equalized within the 33rd with an beautiful volley to blast a cross from Jorge Miramón contained in the far submit.
Tasked with boosting Madrid’s assault, substitute Vinícius Júnior as a substitute fouled Charles Leclerc close to the sting of the field within the 64th. That led to Marti’s spot kick saved by Courtois.
Madrid’s protection was caught off guard for Martí’s purpose when the staff allowed Levante to work an intricate set piece to arrange his winner.
Assistant coach David Bettoni was within the dugout for a second straight match for Madrid as Zinedine Zidane continued his self-isolation after testing optimistic for COVID-19.
“It’s a tough loss. After the sending off, the sport was uphill for us,” Bettoni stated.
Madrid loved a robust December when it reeled off 5 straight wins. However Zidane’s staff has dropped factors in three of its final 5 league matches along with shedding to Athletic Bilbao within the Spanish Tremendous Cup semifinals and being dumped from the Copa del Rey by third-tier Alcoyano.
Levante rose to ninth after simply its second win on the highway this season.
“It’s by no means straightforward to play Madrid, even after they have 10,” Martí stated. “You need to play an entire sport and work extraordinarily laborious. This can certainly increase our confidence.”
(With inputs from AP.)