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Madrid on cruise to defeat Granada and regain league lead

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MADRID (AP) – Real Madrid maintained their pre-international momentum by winning their fourth game in a row and climbing to the top of the Spanish league.

Madrid won a 4-1 win over Granada, at 10, on Sunday after dominating early on to reclaim the top spot.

Marco Asensio, Nacho Fernández, Vinícius Júnior and Ferland Mendy all scored to give Madrid their fourth straight win in all competitions.

Carlo Ancelotti’s side have reached 30 points in 13 league appearances, one point more than Real Sociedad, who drew 0-0 at home against Valencia. Madrid are two points ahead of Sevilla, who drew 2-2 at home against Alavés on Saturday.

Granada faced a man in the 67th as midfielder Ramón Rodríguez was sent off for a slipped tackle on Vinícius Júnior. Granada coach Robert Moreno was later sent off for complaining.

The win extended Madrid’s unbeaten streak to seven matches in all competitions ahead of his Champions League visit to the Sheriff on Wednesday.

Ancelotti took some of his key players out of the game in the second half to give them some extra rest, including Luka Modric, Karim Benzema, Vinícius Júnior and Toni Kroos.

“After the international break it’s always difficult to regain momentum, but the team was focused and in general we played a great game,” said Asensio. “We got all three points, which was the most important. “

It was Madrid’s 13th consecutive league win over Granada, who have won just two of their 13 league games this season. He is in 17th place with 11 points, inside the relegation zone.

Asensio put Madrid ahead from inside the box in the 19th minute after an assist from Kroos, who also scored Nacho’s goal in the 25th. Vinícius Júnior added ahead after passes from Benzema and Modric in the 56th, and Ferland Mendy closed the scoring from inside the box after an assist from Casemiro in the 76th.

Real Madrid’s Vinicius Junior celebrates after scoring his team’s third goal during a Spanish La Liga soccer match between Granada and Real Madrid at Los Carmenes stadium in Granada, Spain on Sunday, November 21, 2021.

Granada’s only goal came in the 34th when a low shot from striker Luis Suárez from outside the box deflected Nacho before entering.

Ancelotti was without Gareth Bale and Eden Hazard after returning from the international break with health concerns. Bale injured a leg muscle with Wales, while Hazard had a stomach virus.

COMPANY HELD

Sociedad missed their chance to take the league lead after a home draw against Valencia, a result that extended their unbeaten streak to 17 appearances in all competitions.

The hosts were reduced to 10 players in the 76th due to a red card for defender Aritz Elustondo.

Sociedad’s only loss this season came in their opener at Barcelona in August.

Valencia, unbeaten in three matches, remained in 10th place.

BETIS REBOUND

Real Betis ended their three-game losing streak in all competitions with a convincing 3-0 win at relegation-threatened Elche.

Juanmi Jiménez, Willian José and Nabil Fekir each scored a goal in the first half hour for Manuel Pellegrini’s side.

Betis played a man in the 67th due to a red card for defender Hector Bellerín.

Elche, in 18th place with 11 points from 14 matches, sacked coach Fran Escribá after the game, which extended his winless streak to six straight games.

GETAFE NOT LAST

Getafe beat Cadiz 4-0 at home and came out of the bottom of the table.

It was Getafe’s second victory this season after starting with seven straight losses. His only other victory was at Espanyol two rounds ago, also at home.

The result put the Madrid club two points ahead of later Levante, who drew 0-0 with Athletic Bilbao at home on Friday.

Cadiz, unbeaten in three league games, remained in 16th place, one point outside the relegation zone. He welcomes defending champion Atlético Madrid in the next round.

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More AP football: https://apnews.com/hub/soccer and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

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Azzoni Tales on Twitter: http://twitter.com/tazzoni

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