Jude Bellingham continued his superb start to life in La Liga with a late header to earn Real Madrid a 1-0 win at Celta Vigo on Friday.
The England international broke Celta Vigo’s tenacious defense with his fourth goal in three games in Spain’s top division, disappointing the hosts during their centenary week.
Rodrygo had missed a penalty for Real Madrid.
Vinicius Junior left the game in the first half with what appeared to be a thigh injury, though early Spanish reports indicate it won’t keep him out for too long.
Kepa Arrizabalaga made his debut in goal for Real Madrid on loan from Chelsea as a replacement for the injured Thibaut Courtois, while Carlo Ancelotti continued with Bellingham in the No 10 position, where he has proven lethal.
The England international continued his fine goalscoring form against Celta, eventually finding a gap in their defensive armour as former Madrid manager Rafa Benitez lined up with a sturdy five-man defensive line.
Celta thought they had gone ahead early on but Jorgen Strand Larsen’s goal was ruled out for a soft foul by the forward on Arrizabalaga.
Vinicius departed for Spanish international Joselu after 17 minutes with his thigh bandaged, a worry for Madrid given their squad is relatively light this season in attack, with Ballon d’Or holder Karim Benzema and other forwards departing.
Former Barcelona defender Oscar Mingueza came close after half an hour with a close-range effort on the stretch that flew off-target, while Joselu had a goal chalked off for offside.
Madrid found it hard to get Bellingham on the ball amid Celta’s suffocating defence, but Rodrygo burst through to win a penalty.
The Brazilian forward had been fortunate to win it after Celta Vigo goalkeeper Ivan Villar pushed the ball away before the pair collided.
However, Villar produced a superb save from his spot-kick to keep the score level, before Bellingham intervened.
The midfielder broke the deadlock in the 81st minute when he stayed onside and nodded home from point-blank range after Joselu headed the ball towards goal.
READ ALSO FROM SPORTING TRIBUNE