Madrid inch closer to title with 7th straight win

Madrid: Sergio Ramos scored his fifth goal since the season resumed as Real Madrid beat Athletic Bilbao 1-0 on Sunday to move closer to their first Spanish league title in three years.

Ramos converted a 73rd-minute penalty kick to give Madrid their seventh straight league victory and open a seven-point lead over second-place Barcelona.

Madrid have four matches left as they chase their first league title since 2017.

Ramos had already scored a late winner from the penalty spot in Madrid’s 1-0 win against Getafe on Thursday. He had scored in three other matches since the league resumed.

Ramos converted on Sunday after video review determined there was a foul when defender Dani García stepped on left back Marcelo’s right foot inside the area. Athletic wanted a penalty for a similar foul by Ramos away from the ball a few moments later, but the game was allowed to continue.

Madrid remained the only team with a perfect record after the coronavirus break. Their last three victories came with 1-0 results.

Eighth-place Athletic were coming off two straight victories and had won three of their last four matches, with the only setback a loss at Barcelona.

Madrid were without forward Eden Hazard and defender Raphael Varane because of minor injuries.

Two-time defending champions Barcelona had the lead when the league was suspended but have drawn three of their six matches since the return, including the last two. They will enter the match against Villarreal with coach Quique Setién under pressure because of the team’s poor run of results.

The Catalan club will face Villarreal who have won five of their six matches after

the break.