Ronaldo, Suarez strike again to kickstart their seasons

Reuters
Real Madrid talisman Cristiano Ronaldo and Barcelona striker Luis Suarez took center stage on Saturday in bailing their teams out with late strikes.
Reuters
AFP

Barcelona forward Luis Suarez celebrates scoring the equalizer against Atletico Madrid during their Spanish league match at the Wanda Metropolitano stadium in Madrid on October 14, 2017. The match ended 1-1.

Real Madrid talisman Cristiano Ronaldo and Barcelona striker Luis Suarez took center stage on Saturday in bailing their teams out with late strikes to silence their critics following slow starts to the season.

Ronaldo shrugged off a glaring miss by snatching a 2-1 win for Real at Getafe with a deadly first-time strike in the 85th minute to claim his first league goal of the season.

The Portuguese missed Real's first four league games due to a suspension for pushing a referee and although he scored four times in the UEFA Champions League and once in the Spanish Super Cup, his barren spell looked set to continue against Getafe after he spurned an open goal.

Ronaldo, however, had the last word when he buried substitute Isco's chipped past beyond Getafe goalkeeper Vicente Guaita, who had turned away a potent shot from the 32-year-old in the first half.

"It was important for him to get his first goal," coach Zinedine Zidane told reporters.

"We will see how it goes now but I am very happy with his goal, and also Isco's assist."

Suarez, meanwhile, headed in Barcelona's equalizer in a 1-1 draw at Atletico Madrid and celebrated wildly, taunting the fans behind the goal before rushing to the adjacent stand and cupping his ears.

Reuters

Cristiano Ronaldo scores Real Madrid’s second goal — the winner — against Getafe during their match at Coliseum Alfonso Perez in Getafe on October 14, 2017. Real won 2-1.

The Uruguayan has faced criticism for his lumbering performances this season, in which he had only scored two goals in eight previous appearances in all competitions.

Suarez rushed back from a knee injury in order to help Uruguay's bid to qualify for the World Cup and his form appeared to suffer.

In the previous game against Las Palmas he ripped his shirt off and walked off the pitch before full time in frustration after missing a clear chance to add to the 3-0 scoreline.

He had boosted his confidence by scoring twice for his country against Bolivia to seal its place in next year's World Cup in Russia and struck again by appearing at the far post to nod in Sergi Roberto's arching cross.

"Suarez played very well in addition to his goal but strikers live for scoring and his confidence will change rapidly because of it," Barcelona coach Ernesto Valverde said

"When he doesn't score it's as if he's in the shadows but he scored today and had another clear chance. He negotiated the madness in the penalty area well and I hope this is the start of a good run for him."

Barcelona tops the standings with 22 points while Real climbed above Atletico into second on 17. Sevilla slid down from second to fourth after losing 0-1 at Athletic Bilbao, suffering an eighth consecutive away defeat to the Basques.


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