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Ronaldo rescues Madrid with back-heel flick

20 April 2018

Luis Garcia, Michael Essien and many more former stars heap praise on the ICC tournament and explain how it prepares for the long season ahead.

Zidane also sounded a familiar tone on the trials of striker Karim Benzema, who made way for Bale to leave him with one goal in his previous 10 outings in all competitions.

MADRID (AP) - Cristiano Ronaldo scored with a late backheel flick to help Real Madrid salvage a 1-1 home draw against Athletic Bilbao in the Spanish league on Wednesday.

The Spain global was close to joining Madrid in the winter transfer window but ended up signing a new long-term contract with Athletic.

The former Tottenham forward nearly found the leveller, clipping a volley narrowly wide before Cristiano Ronaldo's instinctive backheel beat inspired Athletic goalkeeper Kepa Arrizabalaga three minutes from time. "But I haven't felt anything special". Kepa's performance on Wednesday showed Real and Zidane made a mistake by not signing the stopper.

"When I start a season I start with three goalkeepers and finish with three goalkeepers".

Afterwards, asked if he was sorry with his decision, the coach stated: "How can I think that?" I'm not bothered about who their best player was.

Real have managed to hit a different gear in the Champions League knock-out stages but this draw means they have now won only once in their last four matches, having strung together 11 victories from their previous 12.

Kepa, whose previous contract with Athletic had been set to end this summer, grew exhausted of waiting for Madrid to make a move after reportedly undergoing a medical with Los Blancos in January. He signed a contract extension and now has a €80 million release clause in his contract.

"We have absolute confidence in him, as we do in all our players, and I'm sure he's going to net more in more games and extend his 12-match scoring run". But the problem that has troubled Bilbao all season came back to haunt them against Real Madrid as a lack of clinical finishing led them to drop two valuable points against Real Madrid. "But it's a bittersweet result because we came very close to winning and it's annoying to concede a late equaliser".

Ronaldo rescues Madrid with back-heel flick