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Rediff.com  » Sports » Real Madrid lose, slip to fifth

Real Madrid lose, slip to fifth

December 08, 2008 12:32 IST

Renato scored a late winner for Sevilla at the Bernabeu as they survived a spirited fightback from champions Real Madrid to win 4-3 in the Spanish Primera Liga on Sunday.

Adriano Correia gave Sevilla a third-minute lead and although Raul pulled one back in the 19th minute, Ndri Romaric and Frederic Kanoute had the visitors 3-1 up at halftime.

Gonzalo Higuain and Fernando Gago levelled for Real midway through the second half, but a red card for Arjen Robben took the wind out of their sails, and Renato headed the winner six minutes from time.

Real's third defeat in four league matches left them fifth in the standings with 26 points from 14 matches, nine behind leaders Barcelona who they play at the Nou Camp next weekend.

"We didn't expect to be in this position [ahead of the Barca game]. Without Robben and various players injured it will be a very difficult match," Real sports director Predrag Mijatovic told Canal Plus television.

Barca, who hammered Valencia 4-0 Saturday, are six point points clear at the top with 35 points after second-placed Villarreal were held 3-3 at home by Getafe.

Valencia are third with 27 points ahead of Sevilla on goal difference.

CASILLAS ERROR

Real were trailing after Iker Casillas flapped at a Jesus Navas cross and Brazilian midfielder Adriano volleyed home at the far post.

Raul's diving header was only a brief respite as Sevilla looked more assured on the ball.

Ivory Coast midfielder Romaric rose to head Sevilla back in front at a free kick and Mali striker Kanoute stroked in the third from a loose ball, just before the break.

At the interval, Real trudged off with the Bernabeu whistling and chanting for president Ramon Calderon to resign.

Higuain got the fans behind the team again with a 25-metre shot in the 67th and two minutes later Gago headed in from a free kick.

Casillas and Andres Palop traded spectacular saves, and Real struck the woodwork twice before Robben, their most effective player on the night, foolishly picked up his second yellow card to get himself sent off and the fightback ended.

Earlier, Deportivo Coruna overcame Malaga 2-0 at home to go seventh with 24 points, behind Atletico Madrid on goal difference.

Malaga keeper Inaki Goitia let Angel Lafita's free kick slip through his hands after 65 minutes and Mexico striker Omar Bravo netted the second from the penalty spot soon after.

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