Real Madrid celebrated their 35th La Liga title conquest in front of the home fans at the Santiago Bernabeu after a 4-0 win over Espanyol clinched the league crown for the storied Spanish side. Needing only a point from the match, Madrid started several reserve players, but still managed the convincing victory.
Los Blancos are now 17 points ahead of Sevilla, who have four matches (12 points) to play, and 18 points in front of Barcelona, who have five matches (15 points) remaining.
Brazilian winger Rodrygo was the star of the show, staking Madrid out to a comfortable lead with two first-half goals. He converged centrally from his left wing position on both goals. On the first, he combined with compatriot Marcelo, and on the second he took advantage of a ball won by Mariano Diaz. Rodrygo’s cool finish on both chances belied his 21 years of age.
With the result no longer in doubt, the second half turned into a celebration with Dani Ceballos putting on a skills show and Madrid getting two more goals. Both of the second-half strikes came in transition: Marco Asensio expertly finished off the third goal, while two of the club’s biggest stars combined on the final strike. Vinicius Jr and Karim Benzema came off the bench in the second half with the Brazilian once again feeding the Frenchman for his league-leading 26th goal.
MORE: Carlo Ancelotti’s famous five: How Real Madrid La Liga title success completes historic quintet in Europe’s major leagues
Real Madrid have an eye toward Wednesday’s UEFA Champions League semifinal second leg against Manchester City and they rested several starters ahead of that match. Given other injuries and suspensions, central midfielder Casemiro even featured at center back.
The timing of Real Madrid’s title triumph will lead to an interesting situation on May 8. That’s when Real Madrid visit archrivals Atletico Madrid as newly crowned champions. The custom in Spanish football is for opponents to give newly minted champions a guard of honor. It remains to be seen if Diego Simeone and the Colchoneros will comply.
Real Madrid vs. Spanish final score
RMA – Rodrygo (Marcelo) – 33rd min.
RMA — Rodrygo — 44th min.
RMA – Marco Asensio (Eduardo Camavinga) – 55th min.
RMA – Karim Benzema (Vinicius Jr.) – 81st min.
Real Madrid vs. Espanyol live updates, highlights from La Liga
Final: Real Madrid 4, Espanyol 0
90th minute: Three minutes of stoppage time and the party can officially start.
Brazilian fullback Marcelo becomes today the most decorated Real Madrid player of all-time with 24 titles. Incredible achievement. ⚪️🇧🇷#Real Madrid
His contract runs out in June but no one will ever forget Marcelo – he marked an era. pic.twitter.com/FL4U0yXZBY
— Fabrizio Romano (@FabrizioRomano) April 30, 2022
81st min: 4-0 Royal! What a way to close it out. In transition it’s Isco to Vinicius wide left and as we’ve seen many times this season, the Brazilian cut it back to strike partner Benzema who got his league-leading 26th goal.
76th min.: SUB — Espanyol bring in Fran Merida for center mid Yangel Herrera.
75th minute: SUBS — Real Madrid’s Vinicius Jr. and Gila come in for Rodrygo and Camavinga, who had filled in at center back. Gila is to defend by trade.
71st min: Real Madrid score a fourth, but it’s scratched by the referee. Karim Benzema cuts the ball back in the box to Isco who drives it home. But Rodrygo is punished for being offside and in the line of sight of goalkeeper Diego Lopez.
65th minute: SUBS — Moments after Isco has to clear an Espanyol chance off the line, the visitors make two subs, one being the removal of star forward Raul de Tomas while Wu Lei comes in.
60th min.: SUBS — Isco, Benzema and Kroos come in for Casemiro, Mariano Diaz and Luka Modric. The final 30 minutes will be a celebration.
55th minute: GoalMadrid! It’s a formality at this point and Marco Asensio puts the game away in transition with Eduardo Camavinga putting him through. The finish was fantastic just inside the far left post.
46th min.: Second half is underground. Don’t sub. It’ll be interesting to see whether Carlo Ancelotti brings on a couple of the stars on the bench for a round of applause.
Halftime: Real Madrid 2, Espanyol 0
half-time: Despite all the changes, Real Madrid still has enough quality to sit two goals ahead of Espanyol and there are just 45 minutes left before the party starts in Madrid. Rodrygo gets the goals as the brightest and sharpest of Madrid’s attackers (teammate Mariano Diaz failed to convert on three chances). Espanyol was competitive, but the gap in quality is evident.
Rodrygo with two perfect finishes to put Real Madrid on the brink of the La Liga title ✨ pic.twitter.com/ixXhNXpdEV
– B/R Football (@brfootball) April 30, 2022
49th min.: The referee calls the end of the half after a VAR check on a potential handball by Real Madrid’s Lucas Vazquez on an Espanyol cross. It looked suspicious, but nothing given.
44th minute: Rodrygo recovers to score a second! Another giveaway by Espanyol in the back as Mariano Diaz wins the ball from a defender. The ball falls in the path of Rodrygo who runs at goal and finishes. Rodrygo is being rewarded for a solid season and good recent form.
4 goals, 2 assists and 3 penalties won in Rodrygo’s last 6 games. 🇧🇷✨
– Madrid Xtra (@MadridXtra) April 30, 2022
40th minute: A couple of lengthy stoppages. First it was for Espanyol’s Sergi Gomez who took a knock and looked to be bleeding. Then Rodrygo took a ball to the head and needed some time to recover.
33rd min.: Rodrygo goal! Playing on the left side in place of Vinicius, he combines with compatriot Marcelo and calmly slots home inside the box. A show of personality from Rodrygo. Real Madrid up 1-0.
– Infinite Madrid (@InfiniteMadrid) April 30, 2022
32nd min.: The teams are now having a harder time to create opportunities now that both sides have settled in. Real Madrid still dictating play, but Espanyol is not intimidated.
The last time that Espanyol came away with a point from the Bernabeu was back in 2012.
0-0 Madrid-Espanyol Minute 30.
Espanyol’s last draw at the Bernabéu:
2-2 on December 16, 2012
(with goals from Sergio García, Cristiano, Coentrao and Albín)
– Pedro Martin (@pedritonumeros) April 30, 2022
22nd min.: Another Mariano Diaz chance! Luka Modric with a delightful cross and Diaz tried too hard on the snap header and it goes wide. That’s three chances for Diaz to start this match.
21st min.: Both teams continuing to exchange blows. Raul de Tomas takes a shot from distance and goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois punches away.
13th minute: Real Madrid hit the post! Good work by Casemiro to flick the ball to Mariano on the short corner, but he’s foiled by the woodwork. It’s a pretty even match so far.
7th minute: Espanyol’s turn to take a crack. It’s Vilhena with the left-footed blast from right outside the box, also deflected for a corner. Espanyol will get its looks in this game.
3rd minute: Chance for Real Madrid. Giveaway by Espanyol in the back and Mariano Diaz has a shot in the box deflected for a corner by defender Leandro Cabrera. Nothing comes from the corner.
1st minute: We’re underway.
1 min from K/O: After Rafa Nadal was on hand for the ceremonial first kick, there was a moment of silence for Freddy Rincon, who played for Real Madrid in 1995-1997.
2 mins from K/O: The players take the field. Marcelo will be charged with hoisting the league trophy should they win it.
60 mins from K/O: Real Madrid fan Rafa Nadal shows up for the big occasions:
— Madrid Zone (@theMadridZone) April 30, 2022
60 mins from K/O: The La Liga trophy will be at the Bernabeu, ready to be awarded to Real Madrid:
– Los Blancos Live (@LosBlancos_Live) April 30, 2022
Real Madrid vs Espanyol line-ups
As expected, Carlo Ancelotti rings the changes with the Champions League second leg against Manchester City looming on Wednesday. David Alaba is out injured, and Eder Militao and Nacho are suspended, but a handful of starters are sprinkled into the lineup, including Casemiro playing at center back with Eduardo Camavinga marshaling the midfield.
Real Madrid line-up (4-3-3, left to right): 1-Courtois (GK) — 12-Marcelo, 5-Jesus Vallejo, 14-Casemiro, 17-Lucas Vazquez — 19-Dani Ceballos, 25-Eduardo Camavinga, 10-Luka Modric — 21-Rodrygo, 24-Mariano Diaz, 11 -Marco Asensio
Real Madrid subs (10): 13-Lunin, 23-Mendy, 34-Gila, 2-Carvajal, 8-Kroos, 15-Valverde, 22-Isco, 20-Vinicius Jr., 9-Benzema, 45-Diego
Espanyol will be without Oscar Gil, Keidi Bare and Pedrosa, according to Spanish reports. Didac, Embarba and Morlanes, who were projected to be starters, will all start on the bench.
Espanyol lineup (4-4-2, left to right): 13-Diego Lopez (GK) — 4-Cabrera 24-Sergi Gomez, 5-Calero, 22-Aleix Vidal — 19-Vilhena, 10-Darder, 25-Yangel Herrera, 14-Melendo — 9-Javi Puado, 11-Raul of Thomas
Spanish subs (12): 1-Oier (GK), 34-Joan Garcia (GK), 2-Llambrich, 6-Morlanes, 7-Wu Lei, 8-Fran Merida, 15-David Lopez, 16-Loren, 17-Didac, 18-Dimata, 21-Nico MR, 23-Embarba
What channel is Real Madrid vs Espanyol
|Date||Sat, April 30||Sat, April 30||Sat, April 30||Sun, May 1|
|Time||15:15 BST||10:15 ET||10:15 ET||00:15 EST|
|TV-channel||LaLigaTV||—||TSN 4||beIN Sports|
|streaming||Amazon PrimeUK||ESPN+||TSN GO, TSN.ca||Kayo, beIN Sports Connect|
UK: LaLiga TV will broadcast the match in the UK with the stream available on Amazon Prime (for subscribers).
USES: All La Liga matches in the USA are exclusively available in English and Spanish on ESPN+.
Canada: TSN has the rights to La Liga in Canada and will televise and stream the match.
Australia: beIN Sports broadcasts La Liga in Australia on TV and streaming.