Seville (Spain), May 10 (IANS) Sevilla defeated Real Madrid 3-2 here to climb to seventh in the La Liga, the final Europa League berth, leaving the multiple European champions three points behind second-place Atletico Madrid with two matches left to play.
Already missing some starters to injury and suspension, Real Madrid coach Zinedine Zidane fielded a line-up with seven substitutes, clearly looking ahead to the May 26 Champions League final against Liverpool, reports EFE news agency.
Real Madrid dominated possession in the early going during Wednesday night’s match, but their first chance didn’t come until the 15th minute and Sevilla never lost their poise.
The hosts broke the deadlock in the 26th minute thanks to a goal by Wissam Ben Yedder.
Only a goal-line intervention by Blancos defender Jesus Vallejo stopped Miguel Layun from making it 2-0 in the 42nd minute.
The respite was only temporary, however, as the Mexican came back to score in the final seconds of the first half.
The visitors were better at both ends of the field after the break and won a penalty on a foul by Franco Vazquez, but Sergio Ramos hit the cross-bar.
The visitors continued to press, yet the next goal went to Sevilla, a Gabriel Mercado effort that deflected off Ramos into the Real Madrid net to boost the hosts’ advantage to 3-0.
Borja Mayoral clawed back a goal for Real Madrid in the 87th minute and Ramos partially made up for his earlier gaffes by converting a penalty in stoppage time.