Real Madrid vs. Real Betis: Final score 3-1, Los Merengues pull away late for the win

Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno

Mesut Özil opened and closed the scoring for Real Madrid as they handed Real Betis' European hopes a blow with a 3-1 victory at the Bernabéu.

Real Madrid continued to put pressure on Barcelona and at the very least make sure their rivals earn their latest league title with a 3-1 defeat of Real Betis today at the Bernabéu. Mesut Özil was particularly sharp for Los Merengues, scoring twice including a late stoppage time goal to secure the result for Madrid.

Ruben Castro appeared to have put Betis in front early, finishing off a through ball from Nosa Igiebor. Castro was ruled offside, which he was, so the match remained scoreless until the 45th minute when Özil put Madrid ahead 1-0 just before the halftime break. The German midfielder played a picture perfect one-two with Karim Benzema who received the pass from Özil and immediately returned the ball as he raced past the Betis attempt at an offside trap and beat Adrián one-on-one.

More from our team blogs: Real Madrid blog Managing Madrid

Benzema was on the other end of a great passing play in the 57th minute when Cristiano Ronaldo drew out a Betis defender before hitting Benzema on the run into the box. Benzema rounded the keeper and placed a shot between Adrián and the near post to double Madrid's lead.

Betis got some hope in the 70th minute when Castro was pulled down in the box by Nacho allowed Jorge Molina to step up and beat Diego Lopez to the top corner.

Madrid put the game away in stoppage time after Ronaldo dribbled around the Betis defense and lofted a cross to José Callejón whose bouncing volley shot was hammered into the roof of the net by Özil from close range.

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