Real Madrid welcome Athletic Club to the Estadio Santiago Bernabeu this Wednesday night in the rescheduled LaLiga Santander Matchday 9 meeting between the two teams. Los Blancos have the chance to open up a seven-point lead at the top of the table with a victory, while Los Leones will be looking to record their first victory since October 23. Stay with us for all the build-up to Real Madrid vs Athletic Club and then updates from the match itself.
Real Madrid vs Athletic Club FINAL SCORE: 1-0
This is the start of our Real Madrid vs Athletic Club live blog, with updates from this highly anticipated LaLiga Santander fixture following on from here. As always, the entries nearest the top are the most recent ones.
FULL TIME: Real Madrid 1-0 Athletic Club
Karim Benzema’s goal and a mixture of the defending of Eder Militao and the saves of Thibaut Courtois ensure that Real Madrid pick up all three points and go seven points clear at the top of the LaLiga Santander table.
Minute 85: Athletic so close to equalising
Berenguer’s cross from the right-hand side of the box was met by the head of Zarraga, but Militao got his face in the way to stop it from reaching the Real Madrid goal. Excellent defending by the Brazilian.
Minute 80: More fresh legs
Eduardo Camavinga has replaced Toni Kroos for the final 10 minutes of regulation time.
Minute 76: Sancet tests Courtois
Sancet jinked past a couple of Real Madrid defenders and got a shot away inside the box, but Courtois came out quick and closed down the angle. The Belgian has saved Los Blancos a couple of times tonight.
Minute 70: Modric brought off
Ancelotti wants to fresh legs in midfield and has opted to bring off the recently booked Modric, with Fede Valverde coming on in his place. For Athletic, Oihan Sancet and Alex Berenguer have replaced Muniain and Raul Garcia.
Minute 69: Great chance missed by Athletic
Muniain’s pinpoint free-kick into the six-yard box was missed by everyone, but if someone had got a touch it surely would have resulted in a goal.
Minute 67: Lucas’ shot headed behind
Lucas got forward from right-back and was afforded enough space to try a shot from 25 yards out, which was headed behind for a corner.
Minute 64: First substitution for Real Madrid
Ancelotti has made a like-for-like switch by replacing Marco Asensio with Rodrygo Goes.
Minute 63: Second change for Athletic
Marcelino has turned to his bench by bringing on Nico Williams in place of Unai Vencedor, which means that Oier Zarraga will take up a more central role.
Minute 60: Another important block by Real Madrid
Inaki Williams released Raul Garcia down the right-hand side of Real Madrid’s area and he pulled it back for Dani Garcia, whose goal-bound shot was excellently blocked by Lucas Vazquez.
Minute 55: Kroos shoots wide
Lucas’ pass towards Modric was flicked on by the Croatian into the path of Kroos, who opened up his body and curled an effort just wide of the post.
Minute 53: Key interception by Casemiro
Muniain poked the ball into the path of Raul Garcia, who was ready to get a shot away inside the area, but Casemiro got there to make a vital block.
Minute 46: Half-time change for Athletic
Inigo Lekue, who was on a yellow card and was being tormented by Vinicius, has been brought off and replaced by Oscar de Marcos at half time.
HALF TIME: Real Madrid 1-0 Athletic Club
Karim Benzema’s goal in the 40th minute is all that separates the sides, but Athletic Club could easily have been going into the half-time break with the lead. Real Madrid have been sloppy at the back at times, but they are causing problems going forward.
Minute 40: GOAL FOR REAL MADRID!
Asensio’s right-footed shot from the edge of the box was parried away by Unai Simon, but it went straight to Luka Modric, who instinctively sent it towards Benzema and he poked home from close range. Real Madrid 1-0 Athletic Club.
Minute 28: Benzema shoots wide
Real Madrid won the ball back inside Athletic’s half and that led to Modric laying it off to Benzema, who decided to test his luck from 25 yards out but saw his effort go a yard or so wide.
Minute 27: Courtois to the rescue
Muniain’s free-kick was met by Raul Garcia, who was in acres of space, but his header was well saved by Courtois. Really poor defending by Real Madrid.
Minute 24: Let-off for Real Madrid
Unai Simon’s long ball forward was left by David Alaba, which allowed Inaki Williams to find himself one on one with Thibaut Courtois, but his second touch was too heavy and the chance to score quickly vanished.
Minute 23: Inaki Williams almost scores
Iker Muniain’s pass towards Inaki Williams bounced off of Militao and dropped nicely for the Athletic forward, who had his shot deflected by the Brazilian. Really good opportunity for Athletic.
Minute 11: Benzema denied again
Benzema and Vinicius exchanged passes in the Athletic area before the Real Madrid No.9 attempted an acrobatic effort, but Unai Simon could only turn it behind for a corner.
Minute 7: Benzema comes close
Vinicius’ excellent cross towards Benzema was poked towards goal by the Frenchman, but Unai Simon saved it relatively comfortably.
Minute 4: Asensio’s shot blocked
Ferland Mendy’s cross from the left was headed away by Unai Nunez into the path of Marco Asensio, who took a touch and got a shot away, but it was blocked and went behind for a corner.
Minute 2: Strong start by Athletic
Athletic have wasted no time in being on the front foot, with Real Madrid’s defence looking a little shaky very early on.
20:00 GMT: Minute 1
Athletic Club have kicked things off here at the Bernabeu. Stay with us for updates from Real Madrid vs Athletic Club.
19:30 GMT: Still a lot of empty seats
It is a cold, wet night in Madrid and as such the fans have not been too eager to get to their seats early, with the game set to get underway in 30 minutes’ time.
19:00 GMT: Athletic’s line-up
Marcelino has made three alterations to the Athletic XI that started in the 2-2 draw against Granada last weekend, with Unai Nunez coming in for the suspended Inigo Martinez, Oier Zarraga replacing Nico Williams, and Inaki Williams taking the place of Oihan Sancet.
Athletic’s starting line-up (4-4-2): Unai Simon; Inigo Lekue, Unai Nunez, Yeray Alvarez, Mikel Balenziaga; Oier Zarraga, Dani Garcia, Unai Vencedor, Iker Muniain; Raul Garcia, Inaki Williams.
18:45 GMT: Real Madrid’s line-up
Carlo Ancelotti has made just one change from the XI that started against Sevilla last weekend, with Lucas Vazquez coming in for Dani Carvajal.
Real Madrid’s starting line-up (4-3-3): Thibaut Courtois; Lucas Vazquez, Eder Militao, David Alaba, Ferland Mendy; Toni Kroos, Casemiro, Luka Modric; Marco Asensio, Karim Benzema, Vinicius Junior.
18:30 GMT: Real Madrid vs Athletic Club last season
Real Madrid ran out 3-1 winners when they hosted Athletic Club at the Estadio Alfredo Di Stefano last season in a game that saw Karim Benzema make sure of the three points with two late goals.
18:00 GMT: Athletic’s last win at the Bernabeu
Athletic Club’s last league win away at Real Madrid came back on February 19, 2005, as Asier del Horno and Andoni Iraola both got on the scoresheet. Since then, they have made 17 trips to the Estadio Santiago Bernabeu (or Estadio Alfredo Di Stefano) and taken a total of two points, with two draws and 15 defeats.
17:30 GMT: Can Real Madrid win their seventh straight?
Real Madrid have won their last six games in all competitions and if they can extend that run to seven tonight, it will see them go seven points clear at the top of the LaLiga Santander table.
17:00 GMT: Real Madrid vs Athletic Club preview
On Wednesday evening Real Madrid host Athletic Club in their rescheduled LaLiga Santander Matchday 9 clash. Los Blancos will be looking to extend their excellent run of form, as well as their lead over rivals Atletico Madrid at the top of the table.
After drawing with Osasuna on October 27, Carlo Ancelotti‘s side have won six on the trot, racking up victories against Elche, Shakhtar Donetsk, Rayo Vallecano, Granada, Sheriff Tiraspol and Sevilla. In fact, they haven’t lost since October 3 against Espanyol and have only lost once at home all season, with that coming against Sheriff in the Champions League in September.
Los Leones, on the other hand, have had a less than inspiring start to the 2021/22 season, although, largely thanks to having the best defensive record in LaLiga Santander, they find themselves seventh, just three points behind Barcelona. Marcelino‘s side are winless in five, but they lost just one of those games, against Cadiz on November 5.
Last season, Real Madrid beat Athletic Club home and away in LaLiga Santander, although the Basque side did beat them in the Supercopa de Espana semi-final. Looking strictly at league fixtures, however, Los Blancos are currently on a 12-game unbeaten run against the Zurigorri.
Real Madrid vs Athletic Club team news
Carlo Ancelotti is still without Gareth Bale and Dani Ceballos, although neither player would likely have had much involvement on Wednesday anyway. In fact, the Italian should still be able to field an unchanged team from the weekend.
Marcelino, meanwhile, will be without the suspended Inigo Martinez after the centre-back was sent off against Granada. Elsewhere, Inaki Williams and Alex Berenguer could return to the starting line-up after featuring from the bench on Friday.
Real Madrid vs Athletic Club predicted line-ups
Real Madrid predicted line-up (4-3-3): Thibaut Courtois; Dani Carvajal, Eder Militao, David Alaba, Ferland Mendy; Toni Kroos, Casemiro, Luka Modric; Marco Asensio, Karim Benzema, Vinicius Junior.
Athletic Club predicted line-up (4-4-2): Unai Simon; Inigo Lekue, Yeray Alvarez, Unai Nunez, Mikel Balenziaga; Alex Berenguer, Unai Vencedor, Dani Garcia, Iker Muniain; Raul Garcia, Inaki Williams.
Real Madrid vs Athletic Club: When does it start?
The LaLiga Santander game between Real Madrid and Athletic Club at the Estadio Santiago Bernabeu will kick off at 21:00 CET. That means a 20:00 kick off for viewers in the UK, while for those in the United States, that’s 15:00 ET and 12:00 PT.
Real Madrid vs Athletic Club: Where to watch it?
Viewers in the United Kingdom can watch Real Madrid vs Athletic Club on LaLiga TV, while those in the USA can tune into ESPN or fuboTV.