MADRID // Real Madrid returned to winning ways on Saturday after last week's drubbing at Atletico Madrid but failed to convince and were whistled by their fans during a 2-0 victory at home to Deportivo La Coruna.
Primera Liga leaders Madrid were looking for an inspiring performance before Wednesday’s Uefa Champions League trip to Schalke and were fortunate not to drop points with another drab display following the humiliating 4-0 defeat at the Vicente Calderon stadium.
Cristiano Ronaldo and Gareth Bale each struck efforts against the crossbar at the Bernabeu before Isco curled a shot into the corner of the net to fire the hosts ahead in the 23rd minute.
Deportivo, 12th in the table, created good chances and should have levelled four minutes into the second half.
Midfielder Celso Borges thumped a shot against the post when well placed in the penalty area and Oriol Riera forced a fine save from Real goalkeeper Iker Casillas with a glancing header moments later.
Some Real fans, who whistled when the names of coach Carlo Ancelotti and captain Casillas were read out before kickoff, were growing increasingly restless before Karim Benzema dinked a shot over Deportivo keeper Fabri 17 minutes from time.
The victory, in which Real’s new signing Lucas Silva made his debut 20 minutes from time, put the world and European champions four points clear of second-placed Barcelona ahead of their game at home to struggling Levante on Sunday.
Atletico are three points farther back in third before Sunday’s trip to Celta Vigo.
Sevilla climbed above Valencia into fourth spot, five points adrift of Atletico, thanks to a 3-0 win at home on Saturday to Cordoba.
Both sides had a man dismissed in the second half, with Cordoba midfielder Patrick Ekeng seeing red in the 54th minute and Sevilla midfielder Grzegorz Krychowiak sent off 19 minutes later.
Valencia will reclaim fourth spot if they avoid defeat at home to Getafe on Sunday.
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