Madrid, Aug 30: Star Welsh footballer Gareth Bale proved doubters wrong as he played a key role in Real Madrid’s first win of the season as they defeated Real Betis 5-0 in a La Liga match at the Santiago Berbeu stadium here.
Questioned by some fans and sections of the press, Bale on Saturday night opened the scoring with a diving header in just the second minute of the game. He took advantage of a cross from James Rodriguez to score, Xinhua reported on Saturday.
James doubled Madrid’s lead in the 38th minute with a powerful free kick from a rrow angle.
The second half had barely got underway when Bale turned provider with a right foot cross from fit-again Karim Benzema to head in Madrid’s third.
Colombian intertiol James made it 4-0 in the 49th minute with an overhead kick as Betis failed to clear their lines.
Bale rounded off the scoring with his second of the night: a long ranger effort, which cannoned in off the post in the last minute of normal time. FC Barcelo maintained their 100 percent record at the start to the season thanks to a volley from Thomas Vermaelen, who scored the only goal of the game against Malaga after the visitors had produced a brave defensive display at the Camp Nou stadium.
Carlos Kameni made a string of second half saves to deny Lionel Messi and company, but was helpless to do anything about Vermaelen’s goal which came following a cross from Luis Suarez.
Saturday also saw Asier Illaramendi make his return to Real Sociedad after two seasons with Madrid, but the midfielder was uble to help his side to anything more than a 0-0 draw at home to Sporting Gijon.
Meanwhile, Celta Vigo are overnight leaders after two goals from Nolito and one from defender Andreu Fontas eased them to a comfortable 3-0 win over Rayo Valllecano.
Rayo had to play 80 minutes with 10 members after goalkeeper Tono was sent off following a pelty which led to Celta’s opening goal. The round of matches kicked off on Friday with Villarreal coming back from a goal down to claim a 3-1 win at home against Espanyol.
Felipe Caicedo had put Espanyol ahead, but Roberto Soldado’s second goal in two games and two late goals from Bakambu gave the side from the east coast all three points. IANS