Benzema's backheel assist even better than Guti: Zidane

LaLiga Report: Espanyol v Real Madrid 28 June 2020

Espanyol 0-1 Real Madrid: Karim Benzema stars as Real move two clear at La Liga summit

Casemiro has hailed the backheel assist from Karim Benzema that gave Real Madrid a 1-0 win at Espanyol as "incredible" while Zinedine Zidane believes it was even better than two similar, famous efforts from former playmaker Guti.

The Frenchman took a touch, saw Casemiro running from the midfield and produced an outrageous backheel through the legs of Bernardo Espinosa and into Casemiro's path putting the ball on a platter for him to open the scoring. It would be unfair not to talk about the part Karim played in my goal. "He is a player who invents things", he said, via AS. Karim's quality is not as a 9, it's as a 10.

"I think this one [is the best], Karim's", Zidane said. "We've happy with five wins in a row but it doesn't change anything, we've got six finals left".

The onrushing Casemiro, who had earlier nearly caught out home goalkeeper Diego Lopez with a shot from the halfway line, could not miss from much closer range.

Casemiro then somehow missed the target with a header when he appeared unmarked from close range, but he soon made amends thanks to the quick-thinking of Benzema.

"For me, it was just football", Benzema later told Goal after the final whistle.

"We were playing against a team who came out to fight to the death".

With Real content at preserving their lead and Espanyol keen to avoid further damage, the game drifted towards its conclusion, and by the time the hosts mounted a late rally they were unable to regain momentum as Real returned to the top of the table and left Espanyol floundering at the foot.

Espanyol's Espinosa was inches away from connecting with a ball which flashed across the face of goal while Real defender Marcelo was forced to block a shot in added time which nearly deflected the ball into his own net but it skidded wide instead.

Kike Garcia struck the winning goal in the 69th minute to restore Eibar's lead after Granada forward Roberto Soldado had cancelled out Pablo de Blasis' opening goal, giving the Basques only their second victory on the road this season.

We won it in the last game [a 2-0 win at Malaga].

Madrid holds the tiebreaker on head-to-head results in the event they finish level on points.

Levante effectively sealed their top-flight status with a thumping 4-2 win at home to Real Betis to move up to 12th on 41 points. Javier Calleja's team has earned 13 of a possible 15 points since the restart and is now three points from fourth place and the last Champions League place.

Amid the din and bustle of Liverpool's breaking the 30-year drought and Bayern Munich's unrivalled march to the Bundesliga title, both delayed but inevitable, one moment of brilliance may have just slipped under the radar as the top European leagues rush to drop the curtains on a season marked for memory for all the wrong reasons.

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