EIBAR, Spain — Cristiano Ronaldo continued his latest scoring run with two goals as Real Madrid beat Eibar 2-1 in the Spanish league on Saturday.
After a slow start to the season, Ronaldo has netted 13 goals in his last seven appearances to take his total to 33 in 34 games in all competitions. That is one more score than Barcelona rival Lionel Messi.
Ronaldo put Madrid ahead in the 34th minute after Luka Modric intercepted a ball from defender Aritz Arbilla and placed a perfect pass for the Portugal forward to control with his chest and fire in.
Eibar equalized in the 50th when defender Ivan Ramis broke free of Sergio Ramos to head home a corner kick by Pedro Leon. Ramis needed to be substituted shortly after because of the lingering effects of a knee injury he appeared to suffer near the end of the first half.
Ronaldo had two more excellent chances — on either side of Ramis’ equalizer — to grab another goal but was denied by superb one-handed saves from goalkeeper Marco Dmitrovic.
Madrid coach Zinedine Zidane sent on Karim Benzema and Lucas Vazquez to look for the winner.
But it was right back Dani Carvajal who intercepted a pass by Leon and crossed for Ronaldo to head in his second goal with six minutes remaining.
“The worst part is that their goals both came from our mistakes,” Dmitrovic said. “You can’t give Madrid even half a chance because they will take full advantage of it.”
Ronaldo’s goals were his 17th and 18th in the league. He trails only Barcelona pair Messi with 24 and Luis Suarez with 20.
Madrid defender Raphael Varane was substituted in the 26th after a blow to the head. He walked off the pitch and was replaced by Nacho Fernandez.
Zidane called the win “special” because Eibar, in his opinion, outplayed the visitors.
“They were better. They played a great game,” Zidane said. “We had difficulties, we had trouble keeping control of the ball, but we stayed together and fought until the end.”
Madrid remained third, 12 points behind leader Barcelona which visits Malaga later Saturday. Eibar was left in eighth place.