Two goals from Real Madrid striker Karim Benzema helped his side to a 3-1 win away to Deportivo la Coruna.

The French international scored late goals in each half to give Real Madrid their first win in the Riazor Stadium in 19 years.

Without the suspended Cristiano Ronaldo or the injured Gonzalo Higuain, Real Madrid coach Manuel Pellegrini opted to bring Raul Gonzalez back into the starting 11, while Guti kept his place in the side.

Deportivo meanwhile replaced injured left back Felipe Luis by moving Manuel Pablo over from the right and drafting Laure into the side.

The team also suffered absentees in attack with Riki and Bodipo both on the bench because of physical problems.

Although they were without their star player, Real Madrid began well and took the lead after just 13 minutes.

Laure failed to deal with a Raul Albiol header and Esteban Granero was on hand to head the ball past Dani Aranzubia to make it 1-0.

Real Madrid was playing well against a side that looked leg weary after playing a Copa del Rey quarter final in midweek and Deportivo rarely threatened Iker Casillas’ goal, while also looking vulnerable on the break.

It was no surprise when Benezema scored Real’s second five minutes before half time.

Deportivo was again caught out by a counterattack and Guti’s back heel let the Frenchman in to score an easy goal.

The game looked as if it was going to be comfortable for Manuel Pellegrini’s side, but Deportivo showed their fighting spirit in the second period.

That spirit was reflected more in possession and attacking intention rather than clear chances, but with four minutes remaining Riki, who had come on as a substitute just 10 minutes earlier, gave his side a lifeline.

Marcelo lost the ball on the left for Real Madrid and Riki was brought down by Sergio Ramos in the penalty area.

The Deportivo striker picked himself up and scored the penalty.

It proved to be a false dawn however, as Benzema scored his second of the night in the last minute after good work from Arbeloa on the right wing.

The win keeps Real Madrid within five points of league leaders FC Barcelona.

Source: GNA

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