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Real Madrid stay five points clear of Barcelona after Athletic Bilbao win

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Lionel Messi

The topper of the present La Liga had 62 points in 26 played game with the 19 wins, five draws, and two losses.

The Brazilian struck a second-half victor to seal maximum points after Aritz Aduriz had cancelled out Karim Benzema's opening goal at San Mames.

The Dubai-based airline could also soon be part of a first La Liga title win in five years, as Real Madrid lead fierce rivals Barcelona by two points.

They knew they would be tested by an Athletic side who had the second-best home record in the league and had not lost at home since being beaten by Barcelona in August.

Just three minutes later from the equaliser, Casemiro finished after a Ronaldo flick at the near post from a set-piece.

Making its first touchdown at Adolfo Suárez Madrid-Barajas airport, the Emirates A380 has been emblazoned with the image of Real Madrid footballing giants.

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Atletico Madrid, Valencia and Sevilla must all visit Real down the stretch too but it is an away fixture at Athletic that Zidane is rightly wary of given no team has won there since Ivan Rakitic grabbed Barca's victor seven months ago.

Karim Benzema scored the first goal of the game as Cristiano Ronaldo found space down the left and he crossed for the France striker to put it past goalkeeper Kepa Arrizabalaga. The match will kick-start at 3:15 PM at San Mames.

Barcelona hopes to recover when they take on Valencia (a team they obliterated, 7-0, in the Copa del Rey.) Real, on the other hand, may have a tougher challenge when they take on Bilbao.

The home side's main threat continued to arrive from wide positions, although Ernesto Valverde looked for more guile and invention just before the hour when he introduced tricky winger Iker Muniain.

Athletic Bilbao starting XI (To be Confirmed): Iraizoz, Boveda, Yeray, Laporte, Balenziaga, Iturraspe, Beñat, Williams, Raul Garcia, Lekue, Aduriz.

Their joy was short-live, Casermiro slotted home from close range, after the hosts failed to deal with Toni Kroos' corner, 1-2.

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