Girona fought back from a goal down to claim an astonishing 2-1 win over Real Madrid, inflicting serious damage on the capital club’s title defence.
The result means Zinedine Zidane’s side are now eight points adrift of pacesetters Barcelona at the top of the Liga table, but Real can have no complaints. Girona were the better side from start to finish, with goals from Christian Stuani and Portu giving the Catalans a famous win.
Isco gave the visitors an early lead, finishing from close range after Cristiano Ronaldo’s initial shot had been fumbled by the goalkeeper. But Girona gathered themselves and were unfortunate not to equalise before the break, striking the woodwork twice as they pressed and probed for a breakthrough.
And it eventually came with a quick fire double in the second half, with Stuani firing home before Portu flicked home a clever backheel just moments later. From there, Real Madrid panicked, with Zidane shifting his team into an unfamiliar formation which only seemed to choke their creativity. This could prove to be a big moment in the 2017/18 La Liga season.
Girona celebrate scoring against Real Madrid
Image credit: Reuters
TALKING POINT - What’s going on at Real Madrid?
This was a team that, not so long ago, many assumed would stroll to the Spanish title as well as a third successive Champions League title. They might remain on course in Europe, but in La Liga Real Madrid now find themselves eight points off the pace. So what is going on at the club? Are there underlying issues that are now starting to bubble to the surface? We’re not even in November yet, but is that gap already too big to be bridged?
MAN OF THE MATCH - Portu (Girona)
Each to a man, Girona were excellent, but Portu was the standout for the Catalan side. Stuani was also exceptional, with Pablo Maffeo also marking Ronaldo out of the game, yet it was Portu who made things tick for the home side, scoring the all-important second goal. Girona went bold with their game plan and it paid off. That was embodied by the play of Portu.
Sergio Ramos embrasse la chassure d'Isco (Real Madrid), buteur à Gérone
Image credit: Getty Images
11’ CLOSE TO AN OPENER! That was a great move from Girona and it very nearly resulted in a goal. Real Madrid somehow managed to clear it at the back post, with Stuani trying to force it home. It might have hit the post, on second viewing!
12’ GOAL! Girona 0-1 Real Madrid: That's a suckerpunch! After that last chance for Girona, Real Madrid counter attack up the other end, with Isco finishing from close range after Ronaldo's initial shot was palmed into his path. Cruel.
37’ GIRONA HIT THE POST AGAIN! How did that not go in?! Portu flicks on a header, with Casilla left standing by the flight of the effort, but the ball bounces away off the inside of the far post.
54’ SCRAMBLED OFF THE LINE! That was almost a second goal for Real Madrid. Benzema flicked a shot towards goal following a pull back from Isco and Aday clears off the line!
55’ GOAL! Girona 1-1 Real Madrid: There's the equaliser that Girona have pressed and pressed for! Stuani comes up with a piece of quality to make the breakthrough for the hosts. He drilled home the finish.
59’ GOAL! Girona 2-1 Real Madrid: Incredible! Girona have scored a second and they now have the lead! Maffeo struck a shot towards goal, with Portu flicking it home. They have turned this game around in the space of a few minutes!
83’ VAZQUEZ WAS ONSIDE! Well well well. Vazquez was played in on goal, with replays showing that he was onside. He finished into the net, but the linesman's flag was raised. Wrong call.
Isco scored his fastest goal away from home for Real Madrid (12 minutes) with his team's first touch in the opposition box.
Real Madrid lost from being ahead at half time for the first time in 38 games.