Samu Chukwueze scores brace as Villarreal defeat Real Madrid 3-2 in LaLiga
Samu Chukwueze’s brace inflicted a further blow on Real Madrid’s title hopes as they were beaten 3-2 by Villarreal at home in LaLiga on Saturday despite twice taking the lead. Carlo Ancelotti’s side had been imperious as they thrashed rivals Barcelona 4-0 at the Camp Nou in the Copa del Rey semifinals on Wednesday.
Madrid took the lead after 15 minutes when Marco Asensio’s cross bounced off Villarreal’s Pau Torres and into the net for an own goal. Villarreal found the equaliser in the 39th minute through Chukwueze, who cut inside from the center of the box and beat Nacho before firing low out of Thibaut Courtois’s reach. Vinicius Jr restored Real’s lead two minutes into the second half with a simple finish in front of the Villarreal goal for his ninth league strike of the season.
Yet they could not build on that momentum as they fell to a defeat that left them on 59 points in second place and opened the door for Barcelona to go 15 points clear at the summit if they beat Girona on Monday.
Ancelotti admits Madrid not fully motivated
Madrid host Chelsea on Wednesday in the first leg of their Champions League quarterfinal tie and Ancelotti admitted his team were not fully motivated on Saturday. “It was hard for us to get the ball back, we tried to win it in their half, and we weren’t balanced,” he said. “That’s the reason we conceded three goals. Every player had a lower level than normal. It was hard to have our motivation at 100%, the effort against Barca cost us. That’s normal, this defeat hurts, but I don’t like to talk about individuals. It doesn’t change our mood for Wednesday, that will be a totally different game. Compared to last year in the league, our level has dropped.”
Chukwueze’s wonder goal secures the win for Villarreal
Quique Setien’s side leveled again in the 71st minute when Madrid’s defense failed to clear, allowing Jose Luis Morales to fire home from close range, with VAR overturning the initial offside decision. Chukwueze scored his second 10 minutes from fulltime with a spectacular strike from the edge of the box into the top left corner to win the match for Villarreal and silence the home fans at the Santiago Bernabeu. “It’s a crazy goal,” Chukwueze said. “It’s a dream to score this goal and win here. I’m very happy for this game. The future is going to be much better. I have to take advantage of this moment and keep improving.”
Villarreal, who climbed to fifth place in the battle for a Champions League spot, host relegation-threatened Valladolid next Saturday.
Sources: Madrid’s Valverde punches Villarreal’s Baena after loss
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Information from ESPN’s Alex Kirkland was used in this report.
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