Gareth Bale scored twice as Real Madrid warmed up for their Champions League clash against Juventus with a 3-0 win at struggling Las Palmas, where Cristiano Ronaldo was rested.
With one eye on next week’s European quarter-final first leg in Turin, Los Blancos coach Zinedine Zidane opted to leave in-form frontman Ronaldo behind for the trip to Gran Canaria.
However, Real Madrid never looked in any real danger of not getting the job done as Bale fired them in front on 26 minutes before Karim Benzema converted a penalty and the Wales forward added another spot-kick early in the second half.
Having returned from international duty with Wales at the China Cup, where he became the Dragons’ all-time record goalscorer, Bale continued where he left off – and even spurned a couple of hat-trick chances to set up his team-mates.
Real swept into the lead on 26 minutes, capitalising on a high defensive line by the hosts. mLuka Modric’s pass sent Bale clear down the left – and the Wales forward charged into the penalty area before lashing the ball into the far corner.
Bale chalked up his 11th goal of the season, while Benzema marked his 400th Real Madrid appearance with a penalty, as well as taking the captain’s armband.
Las Palmas: Leandro Chichizola 6 (out of 10), Michel Macedo 6, Ximo Navarro 6, Alejandro Galvez 6, Matias Aguirregaray 6, Javi Castellano 6, Gomez Vicente 6, Alen Halilovic 7, Alberto Aquilani 6, Figueroa Momo 7, Jonathan Calleri 6,
Substitutes: Samperio Jairo (for Macedo, 46) 6, Erik Exposito (for Vicente, 46) 6, Imoh Ezekiel (for Momo, 85) 6.
Real Madrid: Keylor Navas 6 (out of 10), Nacho 6, Jesus Vallejo 6, Raphael Varane 6, Theo Hernandez 6, Lucas Vazquez 6, Carlos Casemiro 6, Luka Modric 7, Marco Asensio 6, Karim Benzema 7, Gareth Bale 8.
Substitutes: Achraf Hakimi (for Nacho, 29) 6, Mateo Kovacic (for Modric 61) 6, Marcos Llorente (for Casemiro, 62) 6
Levante v Las Palmas (LaLiga, April 8)
Juventus v Real Madrid (Champions League, April 3)