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La Liga: Real Madrid miss chance to close in on Barcelona after 0-0 draw with Bilbao

By Aravind
Cristiano Ronaldo of Real Madrid

Barcelona, December 3: Sergio Ramos was sent off as Real Madrid drew 0-0 with Athletic Bilbao in the La Liga on Saturday (December 2).

Barcelona's earlier 2-2 draw with Celta Vigo gave Real Madrid a chance to close in on the La Liga leaders. However, they were unlucky as they hit the post twice to take home just one point from the game. After the result, Real are placed fourth on the La Liga table with 28 points, eight behind first-placed Barca.

First, it was Karim Benzema who struck the left post after beautifully controlling a cross by Isco in the eighth minute. Cristiano Ronaldo too hit the post after the break.

Ramos, wearing a protective mask, was cautioned in the 11th minute after a reckless aerial challenge on Bilbao's Raul Garcia. Ramos further tripped Garcia at the box in the 51st minute, but the referee refused to award a penalty to Bilbao. Ramos struck forward Aritz Aduriz while going for an aerial ball again with four minutes left on the clock. Thereafter, he received the marching orders from the referee, his 19th red card in the La Liga.

Ronaldo was inches wide of the right post in the 72nd minute, after he chested the ball and struck with his left foot at the edge of the box.

Kepa Arrizabalaga had a busy day as the Bilbao goalkeeper had to make a couple of crucial saves to keep a clean sheet.

Earlier, Celta Vigo held Barca 2-2. Vigo took the lead in the 20th minute of the game after Iago Aspas pumped in the rebound off a point-blank save by Andre Ter Stegen of Maxi Gomez's shot. The joy was shortlived as Lionel Messi equalised two minutes later with a neat left-footed strike in between the legs of Celta Vigo goalkeeper Ruben.

Barcelona surged ahead in the 62nd minute when Jordi Alba beat the offside trap and laid out a neat pass for an easy Luis Suarez-tap in.

Ruben was called into action again the very minute, diving to his right to block a header by Messi.

Seven minutes later, an unmarked Gomez had enough time to control the cut-back from Aspas and power it to the top left corner.

Atletico Madrid kept the fight going after 2-1 win over Real Sociedad. Willian Jose converted a penalty for Sociedad in the 29th minute.

Filipe Luis (63rd) and Antoine Griezmann (88th) rescued Atletico and garnered them the three points.

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    Story first published: Sunday, December 3, 2017, 12:28 [IST]
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