5 Things We Learned As Cristiano Ronaldo Saves The Day After Gareth Bale Sees Red

An uncharacteristic moment of red mist saw Gareth Bale sent-off and Real Madrid were almost made to pay as despite another remarkable late fightback with 10 men Las Palmas blew the La Liga title race wide open.


All seemed to be going to plan for Madrid when Isco opened the scoring on eight minutes.

However, on the night Luis Enrique announced he will be leaving Barcelona in the summer, the Barca boss thought he was getting the perfect leaving present from Los Blancos.

1. Bale’s frustration almost costs Madrid big time

Bale had surpassed expectations on his return from a three-month injury layoff by scoring twice in three outings since making his comeback.

However, the frustration of those months on the sidelines took hold and one momentary loss of temper could end up costing Madrid a first La Liga title in five years.

The Welshman’s push on Viera after a late challenge by the Las Palmas man on the ankle that Bale injured back in November wasn’t the most violent action you’ll ever see.

However, by the letter of the law he had to go and Madrid were minutes from paying an extremely heavy price after playing with 10 men for almost the entirety of the second-half.


2. Title race is wide open

Luis Enrique confirmed the worst kept secret in Spanish football that he is off at the end of the season, but the Catalans now have a great chance to win a third straight title under Enrique.

All of the ‘MSN’ were on the scoresheet as Barca thrashed Sporting Gijon 6-1 before kick-off at the Bernabeu to move two points clear of Madrid.

A point meant that Real could only close the gap to one point – and Real now just have one game in hand on Barca.

The two are still to meet at the Bernabeu on the weekend of April 22/23.


3. Las Palmas loads of fun

Las Palmas play like a side from the Canary Islands should: enjoyable, fun and flair-filled football.

Despite a recent run of four straight defeats, Quique Setien’s men didn’t abandon their beliefs and took the game to the European champions.

Only Barcelona have had more possession in La Liga this season and Las Palmas even enjoyed more of the ball at the Bernabeu even before Bale’s dismissal.

And they were rewarded as Boateng and Viera capitalised on Real’s implosion after the break.


4. Navas firmly in the firing line

Doubts over Keylor Navas’ long term future as number one at the Bernabeu for next season have been growing for weeks as Madrid line up a blockbuster summer move for either David de Gea or Thibaut Courtois.

In an error-strewn season, the Costa Rica international had another night to forget and, for the first time, received the Bernabeu boos plenty other Madrid players have suffered through the years.

Navas should have kept out Viera’s penalty having got a hand to the spot-kick.

And to compound that mistake he came flying off his line moments later to allow Boateng the simple task of flicking the ball beyond him and into an empty net.

5. Ronaldo to the rescue

It says much about Madrid’s Jekyll and Hyde season that they keep finding themselves in critical situations, yet somehow always seem to find a way to turn it around.


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