La Liga 2016/17: Sporting Gijon 2-3 Real Madrid: 5 Talking Points
Real Madrid's march to the La Liga title continues thanks to Isco's heroics
Real Madrid pulled off a stunning last-gasp 3-2 win over Sporting Gijon thanks to an Isco masterclass, which takes their lead over Barcelona to six points, ahead of the Blaugrana’s game against Real Sociedad later tonight.
Sporting Gijon stunned Real Madrid with a 14th minute opener via Duje Cop, only for Isco to respond with a wonderful strike minutes later. The hosts then took a shock lead in the second half thanks to Mikel Vesga’s excellent header in the 50th minute, only for Alvaro Morata to equalize on the hour mark. Isco then produced a superb low drive in the 90th minute to ensure Madrid walked away with all three points.
Here are 5 talking points from the game:
#1 Zidane Time
Like Sir Alex Ferguson’s ‘Fergie Time’, this Real Madrid side have time and again come up with the goods in the final few minutes. They have scored 18 times in the last 10 minutes of a game, more than any other side in La Liga this season.
This trait goes beyond superior fitness – Real Madrid seem to have an eerie composure about themselves even when chasing a game in the final few moments. It’s a reflection of their manager – who exudes calm on the touchline even when things aren’t going right.
When Isco found the time to hammer a low drive to put Real Madrid 3-2 up, there was an air of inevitability to the winner. This is characteristic of champions; the confidence that seeps through the entire squad, not just the first XI. Zidane’s wide smile at the end said it all – the Spanish press will no doubt point and probe at Madrid going 2-1 down to Gijon, but make no mistake; when it happens so often, it is not ‘papering over cracks’ – it is a genuine quality.
After the game, Zidane outlined his view of his sides late heroics, saying “We know that with the team we have we can do damage to any team and fighting to the end to get three points is in our DNA at Real Madrid.”