With one fewer than Barcelona’s Robert Lewandowski, the league’s leading scorer, the French striker has already scored 17 goals in La Liga this season. Lazaro and Lucas Robertone scored for the visitors in the 15th minute, while Benzema scored all three of his goals for Madrid in the first half and Rodrygo early in the second. Coach Rubi of Almeria made a number of alterations to his starting lineup because he didn’t think his squad had a chance to win at the Santiago Bernabeu and thought their trip to Elche on Tuesday would be more beneficial to their chances of surviving.
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Madrid had slim chances of keeping the title, but they nevertheless played freely in attack during a fun game that was low on stress. Both Barca and Madrid lost in the middle of the week, with Los Blancos falling 4-2 at Girona behind four goals from Argentine attacker Taty Castellanos. Coach Carlo Ancelotti decided to use Aurelien Tchouameni at the base of the midfield rather than Toni Kroos once more, perhaps repentant after that humiliation.
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Benzema also made a comeback after missing the trip to Montilivi due to an injury, and it was fatal for Los Blancos. In the fifth minute, Vinicius Junior squared the ball to Benzema for a straightforward finish after dancing past two players to reach the touchline. After 17 minutes, the forward doubled his total and Madrid’s advantage, though Rodrygo was given credit for this time.
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The Brazilian winger outshone Samuel Costa with strength and skill, beating him afterward before setting up Benzema for the goal. After 42 minutes, the 35-year-old finished off his hat trick from the penalty spot after Largie Ramazani carelessly fouled Lucas Vazquez. In stoppage time at the end of the first half, the Belgian winger atoned for his error by setting up Lazaro to score for Almeria.
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When Rodrygo turned on the edge of the box and fired a rocket into the top corner early in the second half, it dashed any hopes the visitors had of mounting a comeback. On the hour mark, Almeria’s Lucas Robertone headed in a Francisco Portillo cross as Madrid’s defense disengaged. Ancelotti will not be pleased with his team’s defensive troubles, despite the fact that their chances of preventing Barcelona from winning the title are quite slim.
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With Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City looming in the Champions League semifinals, Madrid have already conceded six goals in their previous two games after an excellent run of seven clean sheets in nine games.With 10 minutes left, Benzema thought he had earned a penalty when goalkeeper Fernando Martinez brought him down, but video review technology revealed the Madrid attacker had actually overturned defender Rodrigo Ely first.
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The striker hit the post in the dying moments as Ancelotti’s team toyed with Almeria, while Madrid substitute Marco Asensio twice hit the woodwork and Eduardo Camavinga had a goal disallowed for offside against Vazquez. With his hat trick today, Karim Benzema has now recorded three hat tricks in the month of April, an astounding feat.
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