Bale helps Real Madrid to opening win in La Liga

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Real Madrid put a poor pre-season behind them to kick off the new campaign with a 3-1 win away to Celta Vigo.

Karim Benzema, Tony Kroos and Lucas Vazquez scored the goals to see Zinedine Zidane's side start the season with three points on a day when perhaps the biggest story was that Gareth Bale was in the Madrid starting 11.

Zidane said in pre-season that it would be better if Bale left the club, but with Eden Hazard injured, Bale was in the side after spending much of the summer on the sidelines.

The Welshman set up Benzema for Madrid's opening goal, after which Madrid surrendered possession to the home side. However, Zidane would have been pleased to see his team show more defensive organization.

Celta's top scorer from last season, Iago Aspas had the ball in the Madrid net on the stroke of halftime, but the goal was ruled out for offside after the referee consulted with the VAR.

Madrid were reduced to 10 men in the 55th minute after Luka Modric was shown a red card after catching Denis Suarez on his Achilles heel. But before Celta could think about taking advantage, Tony Kroos made it 2-0 with a long range shot which went in off the underside of the bar.

Vazquez added a third with 10 minutes to go. Although Iker Losada netted a last minute goal for Celta, the feeling was that this Madrid will be tougher to beat than the team which struggled through pre-season. 

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