Gareth Bale was on target in a comfortable Real Madrid win.
The Welsh international has been placed under heavy scrutiny in recent weeks following a poor run of form coinciding with a number of Madrid problems.
With the team on tenterhooks and Bale branded by the Spanish publications Marca and AS in recent days as lazy and selfish, it was a brave decision by Carlo Ancelotti to include him in the starting XI.
Fortunately for the Italian, the 24-year-old avoided any early jeers from the demanding Santiago Bernabeu crowd as he ended his nine-game scoreless run with a clinical finish after just 20 minutes.
With superstar Cristiano Ronaldo uncharacteristically wasteful, Bale was Madrid’s hero on the day as he added his second minutes before the half-time interval, diverting Ronaldo’s low drive into the corner.
|Fixture||Goals||Shots||Key Passes||Total Crosses||Interceptions||Pass Completion %||Mins Played|
|Gareth Bale||vs Levante||2||7||1||5||2||87.5%||90|
Aside from his goals, the former Spurs attacker’s overall impressive performance will have brought relief for Ancelotti and under-fire president Florentino Perez.
He recorded seven shots, five crosses, one key pass and 40 accurate passes with an impressive completion rate of 87.5%.
However, more importantly was his willingness to get back and he produced his defensive duties well, making two interceptions which was more than fellow attackers Ronaldo and Karim Benzema combined.
The victory moves Los Blancos back to within a point of league leaders Barcelona ahead of the hotly anticipated El Clasico encounter at the Nou Camp next weekend.