A late, towering header by Aurelien Tchouameni secured a 2-1 victory for Real Madrid against Las Palmas, propelling them to the top of La Liga. Las Palmas initially took the lead through Javier Munoz early in the second half, but Madrid mounted a comeback, with Vinicius Junior equalizing before Tchouameni’s decisive winner, coinciding with his birthday.
Carlo Ancelotti’s side now holds a two-point lead over Girona at the league’s summit after 21 games, although Girona has an opportunity to reclaim the top spot when they face Celta Vigo on Sunday.
Ancelotti made a crucial substitution, bringing on Tchouameni just three minutes before he scored the winning goal. Ancelotti noted, “It’s a tool that we have, with such a motivated bench, they bring a lot when they come on.”
Without leading goalscorer Jude Bellingham due to suspension, Ancelotti fielded Brahim Diaz, and Dani Ceballos earned a rare start in midfield.
In the first half, Las Palmas’ Sergi Cardona posed a threat, with Madrid’s Vinicius having a couple of off-target attempts. Las Palmas goalkeeper Alvaro Valles remained largely untroubled.
Las Palmas, promoted and currently in eighth place, exceeded expectations under coach Francisco Garcia Pimienta. They broke the deadlock in the second half, with Munoz finishing a counter-attack orchestrated by Kirian Rodriguez and Sandro Ramirez.
Vinicius leveled for Madrid in the 65th minute, redeeming himself after an earlier missed opportunity. Arda Guler, making his LaLiga debut, was introduced by Ancelotti in pursuit of a winner. Tchouameni’s superb header from Toni Kroos’ corner secured the victory for Madrid, highlighting their proficiency from set-pieces.
Las Palmas midfielder Munoz acknowledged Real Madrid’s competitiveness, stating, “We have to be proud, we competed, congratulations to Real Madrid.” Madrid’s ability to react and score from set-pieces showcased their resilience in this hard-fought victory.