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Real Madrid mauled by super Real Sociedad

By Saul Brookfield

Real Madrid's expensively assembled side were sensationally beaten 4-2 by Real Sociedad last night after letting slip a two-goal lead.

The European Cup holders might have bought Toni Kroos and James Rodriguez over the summer but the way they collapsed at the Anoeta Stadium suggests Real should have strengthened their defence.

Sergio Ramos had put Carlos Ancelotti's side ahead in the fifth minute with a powerful header from a corner and even without the injured Cristiano Ronaldo they looked to be running away with the game when a superb turn and finish from Gareth Bale made it 2-0 after just 11 minutes.

Yet Sociedad got back into contention in the 35th minute when defender Inigo Martinez was left unmarked at the far post to score from a flicked on corner. More gaps then appeared in the visitors' defence as David Zurutuza ghosted in to head home.

Wearing their all-pink change kit, the visitors looked rattled and Sociedad took the lead in the 65th minute, Zurutuza scoring at the near post. The former Arsenal striker Carlos Vela then wrapped up a memorable victory by capitalising on some more poor Madrid defending at a corner.

Barcelona made hard work of beating Villarreal, needing a late goal from substitute Sandro Ramirez to earn a slightly fortunate away win.

Lionel Messi had earlier hit the post twice but Villarreal also went close on several occasions, Barça's Jérémy Mathieu nearly scoring an own goal and Tomas Pina cracking a long shot against the bar. But in the 82nd minute Messi was played in down the right of the penalty area by Neymar and slipped the ball past goalkeeper Sergio Asenjo for Ramirez to finish on the line.

Sevilla produced a convincing performance away to Espanyol to pick up their first win of the season. Goals from Carlos Bacca and Vicente Iborra in each half had put Unai Emery's side ahead and though Christian Stuani pulled one back for the Catalans, the Europa League holders held on.

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