Teams: Levante 2-2 Real Madrid
Date: 03 February 2018
Venue: Estadi Ciutat de València
Real Madrid’s dismal season continued as they were held to a 2-2 draw by Levante at the Estadio Ciudad de Valencia.
The hosts got the game off to a promising start, but it didn’t take long before Los Blancos took control. Marcelo threatened to score throughout the opening stages, but it was Sergio Ramos who broke the deadlock in the 11th minute, heading home from a Toni Kroos corner.
Cristiano Ronaldo nearly doubled Real Madrid’s lead in the 32nd minute. After Oier Olazábal spilled a tame Kroos shot, the Portuguese raced onto the ball. However, he could only fire straight back at the keeper on the follow-up.
Real Madrid looked totally dominant by this stage, but they were stunned in the 42nd minute, when Emmanuel Boateng levelled the scores. Keylor Navas had done well to deny José Luis Morales after he got in behind the defence. However, the Costa Rican was unable to stop the rebound from the Ghanaian.
Levante carried their momentum into the second half and Morales was nearly at the heart of another goal in the 57th minute. He initiated a well-orchestrated break, leading to a Jefferson Lerma shot from close range. However, Keylor Navas denied the Colombian.
In the 75th minute, Oier produced a magnificent reflex save at the other end to deny Ramos a second headed goal from a Kroos corner.
Los Blancos regained the lead in the 81st minute after almost an entire half of pushing. Karim Benzema cut the ball back for Isco inside Levante’s box. After taking a touch to control it, the substitute picked his spot and slotted into the net.
Five minutes later, Levante should have drawn level again, but Roger Martí headed wide of the far post with the goal at his mercy after meeting a cross.
However, their chance would come again. 88 minutes in, Giampaolo Pazzini was played in behind the Real Madrid defence and his shot from there went in off the glove of Navas to rescue a much-needed point for his relegation-threatened side.