Real Madrid vs. Real Betis: Final score 2-1, Isco's late winner saves Los Blancos

Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Four minutes from suffering their second straight league-opening draw at home, Real Madrid were saved by one of their summer signings as Isco scored on a header to secure the full three points.

Real Madrid were far from impressive but they did enough to earn the full three points thanks to a later winner from new signing Isco. Betis took any early lead but were unable to leave the Santiago Bernabéu with any points thanks to a gaol from Karim Benzema and Isco's late winner.

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The opening five minutes at the Bernabéu were hectic and rather eventful. After Real Madrid had an early goal disallowed for offside, Real Betis fired right back, putting Los Blancos under heavy pressure and forcing some good saves from Diego Lopez. It was surprising to not see Iker Casillas starting for Madrid, but for reasons that will likely be made clear in the postgame press conference, Carlo Ancelotti chose to stick with Lopez, who finished last season as the starter.

The pressure was a warning for Madrid and they didn't appear to listen as Betis broke through with the opening goal in the 14th minute. Cedric was the engine making a tremendous run, blowing past Marcelo and Sergio Ramos -- into the Madrid area that started near the midfield line. As Lopez moved to cut of Cedric, he pulled the ball back across to Jorge Molina for the finish.

Less than two minutes later, Verdú nearly doubled the Betis advantage, sending a curling ball just outside the far post.

Madrid were denied again in the 19th minute when a second goal was disallowed on a offside call. Cristiano Ronaldo was slightly behind the last defender on the final ball. Good luck for Betis, but the second denial by the linesman woke up Madrid, who began to pour copious amounts of pressure on the visitors.

The equalizer finally arrived in the 26th minute when Isco found Benzema loose in the box and the striker buried his shot past Stephan Andersen. No offside this time, only a 1-1 game.

Ronaldo wasted little time getting things going after the break, hammering a shot off the crossbar in the opening minutes of the half. It was a fitting start to a half that featured both teams leaving several opportunities on the table. Ronaldo had his share of chances but Andersen was up to the task every time.

Betis' best chance came in the 71st minute when Nosa botched a header of a cross from Juan Carlos. Nosa was wide open in the center of the Madrid area and looked to have a sure goal, but his attempt to hammer the ball down into the grass and into the net went wrong and the ball flew well wide.

Just when it looked like Betis would steal a point, Madrid finally found the winning goal in the 86th minute. Marcelo sent a stunning cross in to the box from the left side that was met by Isco, who'd beaten his marker. Isco rose and directed the ball past Andersen with a lovely header, giving Madrid a win in his debut match.

Real Madrid: Lopez; Marcelo, Ramos, Pepe, Carvajal; Khedira (Casemiro 56'), Modric; Ronaldo, Özil (Di María 69'), Isco; Benzema (Morata 81').

Goals: Benzema (26'), Isco (86')

Real Betis: Anderson; Chica, Paulao, Perquis, Nacho; Matilla, Verdu (Rodríguez 79'); Juanfran (Álvaro Vadillo 70'), Cedric (Juan Carlos 62'), Nosa; Molina.

Goals: Molina (14')

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