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    Real Madrid-Valencia score: Benzema’s stunning volley keeps Real within two points of Barcelona

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    Real Madrid capitalized on a strong second half to defeat Valencia, 3-0, on Thursday in a match that allowed Los Blancos to stay within striking distance of Barcelona atop La Liga table. Entering the day five points back following Barca’s victory over Leganes on Tuesday, it was a game that an hour in probably deserved to be a draw but Real was able to find its scoring touch in the second half with Karim Benzema scoring twice. Both Real and Valencia had some good looks in the first half, with Los Che hitting the post and having a goal overturned due to offside. Real was able to respond in the second half with Eden Hazard assisting Benzema in the 61st minute before Marco Asensio put the game away in the 74th with his first touch of the ball in a game in over a year after a long injury layoff.

    The real highlight came in the 86th minute when Benzema produced an outrageous strike by lofting the ball over a defender before firing home to complete the scoreline. Take a look:

    Anything but a victory would have left Real in a tough spot in the final stretch of the season with nine league games remaining. But this win means Los Blancos continue to position themselves for a title run. If Real and Barca finish the regular season level on points, Real wins the crown due to the head-to-head tiebreaker over Lionel Messi and company.

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