3-2: The ref and the VAR ruin UD Almería's great game at the Santiago Bernabéu
The inspired Rojiblancos grabbed a shock two-goal lead before half-time, however, Real Madrid CF produced a controversial second-half comeback to beat the visitors. In the 9th minute of stoppage time, Bellingham headed a cross for Carvajal to poke in the winner
UD Almería grabbed a shock two-goal lead before half-time against Real Madrid CF at the Santiago Bernabéu Stadium, however, in the second half, the Madridistas managed to turn the score around to 3-2 due to the dodgy referee's ruling.
As for the starting XI, Mr Garitano opted to maintain the same formation as in his previous game that took Girona FC last weekend with Edgar as defensive midfielder and with 3 new additions: Kaiky came in to replace injured César Montes, Ramazani took the place of Embarba and Marezi took over from suspended Léo Baptistão. The rest of the footballers remained in their spots: Maximiano in goal; Akieme, Chumi, Kaiky and Pubill defending; Edgar, Lopy, Robertone protecting the midfield and in the attacking zone, Arribas, Ramazani and Marezi.
The first half for a brilliant underdog UD Almería was all about scoring, a rock solid defence, a high pressure on Real Madrid CF's build-up play and looking powerful to show that they truly deserve to stay up in the Spanish top flight.
As soon as the match kicked off, in just 38 seconds, Real Madrid CF Academy product Arribas won the ball back in the final third to trigger a perfect triangulation between Robertone and Marezi that left Ramazani alone against keeper Kepa, who was beaten by the Belgian (0-1). From there on, the Merengues took the game to the Rojiblancos, who held on until in the 43rd minute. It was one of the unforgettable moments of the game when defender Edgar delivered a stunning left-footed volley from 27 yards into the top corner, giving his team a comfortable two-goal lead before heading down the tunnel (0-2).
The second forty-five minutes were very cruel for Gaizka Garitano's side, Real Madrid CF came out in a rush looking to reduce the deficit. UD Almería put their hearts and souls into the game to close the gap to 7 points in a bid to secure league safety hoping to clinch the first victory of the season in Madrid. With 57 minutes on the clock, Bellingham pegged the guests back through a dubious penalty awarded for handball after a lengthy VAR check (1-2).
The Indálicos found strength to recover. UD Almeria had Sergio Arribas' effort ruled out a little later after another long VAR check, with the referee Francisco Maeso ruling there was an infringement in the build-up when Rojiblanco midfielder Dion Lopy caught Bellingham in the face. The match continued 2-1, but 5 minutes later, Maeso first ruled out Real Madrid's leveller for a Vinicius Jr's handball before awarding the goal after deciding it was off the shoulder following another VAR review (2-2). The feeling of helplessness and injustice became greater and greater.
It was the 67th minute and UD Almería had to continue blocking the threats by Ancelotti's men and they did so until minute 90'+9. Unbelievably, the ref indicated an additional 11 minutes at the end of the game!
Real Madrid CF made a late push, Bellingham lifted a cross to team-mate Dani Carvajal who tapped in the winner at the far post to rescue the Merengues, earning them a 3-2 comeback win on home turf against bottom side UD Almeria in a frantic LaLiga EA Sports tussle that was clearly marked by VAR controversy.