Gareth Bale penalty provides below-par Real Madrid win at Levante

Real Madrid's Gareth Bale came off the bench as well as coolly transformed a debatable penalty to secure a 2-1 win at Levante in La Liga on Sunday as the European champions rode their luck to remain within 9 factors of leaders Barcelona.

Real came under hefty stress early but Karim Benzema provided the lead in the direction of the end of the first fifty percent from the spot after a penalty was correctly awarded for handball by Enis Bardhi adhering to a Video clip Assistant Umpire (VAR) review.

Levante, who pulled off a shock 2-1 sway Actual at the Santiago Bernabeu previously this season, deservedly drew level on the hr mark with a sliding coating from Roger Marti, who had struck the woodwork two times before the period.

Real, that shed 2-1 in your home to Girona in their last outing, had a hard time to enforce themselves and Brazilian teen Vinicius Jr was once more their noteworthy performer as more seasoned players like Toni Kroos as well as Luka Modric gave sluggish displays.

Real were then granted a hotly-contested penalty complying with one more VAR evaluation when Casemiro went down theatrically after light call from Levante alternative Cheick Doukoure.

Wales onward Bale, who had actually only changed Benzema mins earlier, deceived Levante keeper Aitor Fernandez with an ice-cool finish from the area yet barely commemorated the objective, brushing away team friends that tried to congratulate him.

Real are 3rd in the standings on 48 points, two behind Atletico Madrid who defeated Villarreal 2-0 earlier on Sunday and still adrift of Barca, who won 4-2 at Sevilla on Saturday.

Real had defender Nacho Fernandez sent off for a second booking late in the video game, although the Spaniard's first yellow card implied he had actually currently been dismissed of following Saturday's 'Clasico' in the house to Barcelona in the league.

Real additionally meet Barca in the second leg of their Copa del Rey semi-final on Wednesday with the tie level at 1-1.

Levante's Ruben Rochina, on the other hand, got a second yellow card for venting his fury at the officials from the sidelines after being changed by Doukoure, having earlier been reserved while he got on the pitch.

"It was a very hard game, they played a block of five players in midfield and it was extremely difficult for us to develop chances, yet we took advantage of the chances we obtained and thankfully they did not," stated Real defender Dani Carvajal.

Carvajal also safeguarded the second charge Madrid were granted, which had actually triggered angry demonstrations from Levante's players and also mentoring personnel.

" I was 25 metres away and also I can listen to the kick, I'm not a referee and they have a tough job as well as if the umpire offers a charge and also the VAR ratifies it then it should be a penalty," he stated.

But Levante head of state Quico Catalan was bemused by the choice, claiming: "The even more replays I see the less I comprehend it. I have actually seen it 37 times and also it seems very, very rough to me".

"If Doukoure had actually struck Casemiro he would certainly have needed to be taken off in an ambulance, and also it shocks me a lot more that this fine was awarded because of VAR."