Ronaldo inspires as Bale sits out injured

Ronaldo brace powers Real Madrid to victory as record signing Bale injures himself in Primera Division warm-up.

    Ronaldo inspires as Bale sits out injured
    Ronaldo proved to be the playmaker in Real’s 4-1 comeback win over Getafe [AFP]

    Cristiano Ronaldo scored a double and set up another goal for Real Madrid in a 4-1 comeback win over Getafe on Sunday in Spain’s Primera Division, as new teammate Gareth Bale couldn't make his home debut after injuring his leg before the match.

    Bale was dropped from Madrid's starting line-up minutes before the match after the club's medical staff examined his left thigh during warm-ups at the Santiago Bernabeu Stadium. The club said it was for "precaution'' and that he would undergo tests on Monday.

    Things only got worse for Madrid's disappointed fans when Getafe forward Angel Lafita opened the scoring in the fifth minute.

    But Pepe scored from a rebound in the 19th before Ronaldo converted a penalty in the 33rd, set up Francisco "Isco'' Alarcon in the 59th, and added another goal in injury time after Getafe had been reduced to 10 men.

    In form

    Results & fixtures

    Friday 20 September

    Osasuna 2-1 Elche

    Saturday 21 September

    Real Sociedad 0-0 Malaga
    Almeria 2-2 Levante
    Rayo Vallecano 0-4 Barca
    Valladolid 0-2 Atl Madrid

    Sunday 22 September

    Real Betis 0-0 Granada
    Celta de Vigo 0-0 Villarreal
    Real Madrid 4-1 Getafe
    Valencia v Sevilla

    Monday 23 September

    Espanyol v Athletic Bilbao

    Ronaldo's 207th and 208th career goals for Madrid in 205 games moved him ahead of Hugo Sanchez as the club's fifth all-time leading scorer. Raul Gonzalez holds the record with 323 goals.

    Ronaldo has scored seven goals in his last four games in all competitions for Madrid.

    Madrid remained undefeated through five rounds and are in third place in the standings, two points behind Barcelona and Atletico Madrid.

    Villarreal also stayed unbeaten in their return to Spain's top flight after drawing 0-0 at Celta Vigo.

    The same lack of finishing touch condemned Real Betis to a 0-0 finish against visiting Granada, leaving both teams with one win through five rounds.

    If losing Bale for what was supposed to be his highly-anticipated first game in front of Madrid's fans wasn't a big enough blow, Carlo Ancelotti's side soon fell behind to their modest crosstown rivals.

    After Ronaldo had squandered back-to-back scoring chances, the Portugal forward lost the ball and Getafe struck when Lafita's resulting shot took a deflection off Pepe before landing in the net.

    But Ronaldo helped Madrid level when he drew a save from goalkeeper Miguel Moya, with the rebound falling for Pepe to tap in.

    Ronaldo put Madrid in front by driving a low spot kick just inside the post after Getafe's Miguel "Michel'' Marcos blocked his free kick with his arm inside the area.

    Ronaldo's quickly taken free kick left Isco alone in the area to curl in his fourth goal in the league play. Ronaldo almost took another goal in the 79th when he clipped the post.

    Getafe played the final five minutes with 10 men after Michel was sent off with a direct red card for fouling Jese Rodriguez with only Moya to beat.

    Ronaldo then got his well-earned brace when he used a brazen back-heeled shot with his right boot to redirect Sami Khedira's cross into the net.

    Madrid paid Tottenham a world-record $132 million for Bale at the close of the summer transfer market.

    Madrid club spokesman Emilio Butragueno said Bale's injury didn't appear to be serious.

    "He felt something and it was more for precaution than anything else,'' Butragueno said.

    The next chance Madrid's fans will have to see Bale at home will be next Saturday against Atletico Madrid in the Spanish capital derby.



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