Eden Hazard made his return from injury to inspire Real Madrid to a comfortable 3-1 win over Eibar in the unfamiliar surroundings of the Estadio Alfredo di Stefano.
With the Santiago Bernabeu currently being redeveloped, Los Blancos played their first-ever competitive match at their smaller training ground stadium on Madrid’s outskirts but still managed to make home advantage count.
It took Toni Kroos just three minutes to open the scoring, angling a wonderful side-footed finish into the top corner of the net after good work by Karim Benzema down the left side. And Sergio Ramos doubled the hosts’ advantage on the half-hour mark, finishing a counter-attack that involved Benzema and Hazard.
Toni Kroos of Real Madrid Image credit: Getty Images
A bullet shot from Marcelo added a third for Real Madrid in the first half as Zinedine Zidane’s side took a vice grip of the contest before the break. Eibar pulled one back in the second half, with substitute Pedro Bias squeezing a shot through the legs of Thibaut Courtois, but despite wobbling towards the end the hosts got the job done to hit the ground running after three months away.
The win sees Real Madrid keep pace with Barcelona at the top of La Liga, once more closing the gap to two points after the Catalans’ similarly emphatic win over Real Mallorca on Saturday evening.