Madrid edge Granada, Atletico win at Eibar

Karim Benzema scored to help Real Madrid eke out a 1-0 win over Granada and take the overnight lead of the Spanish league, while Fernando Torres netted one goal and set up another to lift Atletico Madrid into second place.

Real Madrid's Karim Benzema (right) heads the ball to score past Granada's goalkeeper Andres Fernandez during their Spanish first division soccer match at Santiago Bernabeu stadium in Madrid on Saturday.   -  REUTERS

Atletico Madrid's Fernando Torres celebrates a goal during their Spanish first division soccer match against Eibar at Ipurua stadium in Eibar on Saturday.   -  REUTERS

Karim Benzema scored to help Real Madrid eke out a 1-0 win over Granada and take the overnight lead of the Spanish league, while Fernando Torres netted one goal and set up another to lift Atletico Madrid into second place. Granada's disciplined defense and the solid goalkeeping of Andres Fernandez held Madrid in check, while the visitors' attack matched their star-studded hosts chance for chance in an evenly-contested first half on Saturday. But Keylor Navas thwarted Granada's forward before Benzema tilted the match in Madrid's favour 10 minutes after halftime with a close-range header to put the Santiago Bernabeu crowd at ease. Madrid has 10 points, one more than Atletico and Barcelona, who can reclaim the league lead against Levante today. Torres and Angel Correa both went on as second-half substitutes and inspired Atletico to a 2-0 win at Eibar, leaving Diego Simeone's side ahead of Barcelona on goal difference.

Valencia drew 0-0 at home with nine-man Real Betis after Dani Ceballos saw his second booking in the 48th, as Betis held on to take points despite having a player sent off early for a second straight match.

Espanyol needed a 90th-minute header from Hernan Perez to secure a wild 3-2 win at 10-man Real Sociedad, whose Jonathas had levelled it 2-2 in the 86th. Sociedad had goalie Geronimo Rulli sent off with a direct red card for fouling Marco Asensio in the 41st. In the capital, Madrid's Cristiano Ronaldo saw his

scoring run end after eight goals in his previous two matches. But Navas, who had been seconds away from being sent to Manchester United at the close of the summer window as part of Madrid's failed transfer for David de Gea, extended the club record to a fifth consecutive clean sheet. “I had the chance to stay where I wanted to be and I will give it my all to remain here,” Navas said.

“It was complicated because you know it is an awkward situation. But that is the past and I try to focus on the present, which is all that matters.”

Humanitarian gesture

The son of the Syrian refugee tripped by a Hungarian journalist accompanied Ronaldo on the pitch before the match, receiving applause from the crowd. During that pre-game introduction, Madrid's and Granada's players wore t-shirts supporting the thousands of refugees fleeing to Europe from the Syrian war.

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