Real stage late comeback to beat Valencia

Real Madrid's Karim Benzema celebrates scoring the match-winning goal at Valencia.
Real Madrid's Karim Benzema celebrates scoring the match-winning goal at Valencia.

Vinicius Junior and Karim Benzema have scored within the space of three minutes deep in the second half to propel Real Madrid to a 2-1 win at Valencia in La Liga.

The hosts went ahead in the 66th minute with a thumping low strike from forward Hugo Duro, who spent last season on loan with Madrid.

Real levelled with a deflected strike from Vinicius in the 86th minute and then the Brazilian turned provider, crossing for Benzema to head home the winner in the 88th.

Valencia would have gone top had they held on for the win but instead Carlo Ancelotti's Real lead the standings with 13 points from five games.

"It's never easy to come here especially when you concede the first goal but we never gave in, we kept working and kept persisting," said Vinicius.

"We've got a great result here thanks to the work of the whole team and things are coming off for us right now."

Valencia had made a strong start to the season under new coach Jose Bordalas but suffered a setback in the build-up to kick off when captain Jose Gaya was ruled out injured.

More problems followed when midfielder Carlos Soler came off injured in the 15th minute while right back Thierry Correia soon followed him in hobbling off in the 23rd.

But Bordalas' side still managed to outrun and overpower their opponents for most of the game and took a deserved lead when Duro swivelled to send a bouncing ball beyond the reach of keeper Thibaut Courtois and into the net.

Valencia continued to cause Real problems but eased off in the final 10 minutes and the visitors made the most of their deadly firepower, Vinicius scoring his fifth goal of the campaign and Benzema netting a sixth.

Elsewhere on Sunday, Espanyol's Leandro Cabrera struck a last-minute equaliser to draw 2-2 at Real Betis, who finished with 10 men.

Aleix Vidal gave the visitors an early lead but Betis turned things with goals from William Jose and Nabil Fekir shortly before half-time.

Betis defender German Pezzella saw red with 12 minutes left and Cabrera struck deep into stoppage time to earn the visitors a point.

Real Sociedad were held to a 0-0 draw at home by Sevilla, while it also finished goalless between Mallorca and Villarreal.

Australian Associated Press