VAR a protagonist yet again
Real Madrid defeated Atletico Madrid 3-1 at the Wanda Metropolitano on Saturday. Casemiro, Ramos, and Bale were the scorers for Los Blancos while Griezmann added a goal for the home team. Two controversial decisions marked the match: a penalty awarded to Real Madrid and a Morata disallowed goal. In both instances, referee Xavier Estrada consulted VAR but his final decision left plenty of doubt.
Real Madrid started on the front foot and scored first. Following a corner kick, Casemiro found himself in plenty of space and slotted the ball past Jan Oblak with a beautiful overhead kick. Atletico was quick to respond through a speedy counter-attack and Griezmann finishing confidently to equalize. Then came the controversial decision of the referee to award a penalty for the visitors. Vinicius made a brilliant run down the left flank and as he was approaching the 6-yard box a tackle from behind by Jimenez brought him down. The replays showed that the initial contact was outside the box but the referee decided to award a penalty despite the heated protests from Rojiblancos players. Real Madrid’s skipper Sergio Ramos was ice cold from the spot and put the visitors in front again. 1-2 at halftime.
The second half brought even more controversy as VAR took center stage again. Morata was through one on one with Courtois and chipped the keeper for a spectacular goal. The stadium erupted in anger however after the referee consulted the VAR and consequently disallowed the goal. To add insult to injury, Blancos substitute Gareth Bale scored on the other end of the pitch to make it 1-3 and effectively secure the win for Real Madrid. Thomas Partey from the hosts was sent off in the last minutes of the game for a second yellow card.
Real Madrid extend their winning streak to five games and is now only five points away from leaders Barcelona. Atletico Madrid loses at home for the first time in 9 months and drops to third in LaLiga.