Real Madrid coach, Zinedine Zidane had said many times that all the players in the squad are important. The point was demonstrated today in El Molinón.
Without the BBC, Gareth Bale, Karim Benzema and talisman Cristiano Ronaldo, and with Kroos, Modric, Marcelo and Casemiro on the bench, Madrid came from behind twice to add three more points that see them top the table for another week.
The key today was Isco´s performance, who capped off a great game by scoring the winner in the 90th minute.
Madrid, still have seven games in hand, one more than their rivals, Barcelona, Atletico and Sevilla.
Though Real Madrid dominated possession from the start, creating good chances, it was Sporting that struck first.
Vesga provided the assist for Cop, who arrived late, striking the ball first time to beat Casilla in the 14th minute.
The home side´s lead only lasted three minutes.
Isco stepped up with a great bit of individual skill. He received the ball on the edge of the area, beat two opponents with a beautiful bit of skill with his heel, then fooled the next defender before placing the ball in the top corner of Cuéllar´s goal with a precise left-footed shot.
From then until the end of the first half it was all Real Madrid, who had two clear opportunities to go in the front, before the break. in front.
The second half couldn’t have gotten off to a worse start and that was despite Real Madrid coming close to getting their noses in front after James’ 48th-minute free-kick was met by Nacho and the ball danced along the goal-line.
Sporting regained the lead from a free-kick that was flicked on by Babín to Vesga, whose headed effort looped into the net. The hosts’ ruthlessness in front of goal was simply remarkable.
Madrid again quickly produced a response as they pinned the home side back into their box and they were duly rewarded. Danilo whipped in an inch-perfect cross on 59′ and Morata produced an equally fine header to level things. The Brazilian could have then put the visitors ahead three minutes later when he met James’ free-kick, only to see his headed effort whistle inches wide of the target.
Madrid’s domination was becoming increasingly evident and Marcelo, who had come on in place of Coentrão, came close to rewarding the leaders’ superiority with a strike from the edge of the area after a sublime piece of play from Isco on 72′.
The Spanish international got away from two defenders with some textbook control and evaded the attentions of the three other defenders who looked to halt his progress. This was a foretaste of the move which capped off a memorable display from Isco. Just as it appeared as if the game was destined to finish all square, he collected the ball on the edge of the box and caught Cuéllar out with a low drilled effort which crept inside the near post.
The league leaders show no signs of letting up and collected another three precious points as attentions now turn to the Champions League quarter-final second leg against Bayern.