Real Madrid ended the match with a single point after their 1-1 draw against Athletic Bilbao in the La Liga.

Markel Susaeta starred as Athletic Bilbao ended Real Madrid’s 100% start to the new La Liga season by battling to a 1-1 draw at the Estadio San Mames.

Susaeta worried the dull Real defense during the match and set up a 32nd-minute opener for Iker Muniain which frightened to cause humiliation for Julen Lopetegui’s squad. Substitute Isco made an instant impact when he drew Real level midway through the second half but it was a performance which gave more questions than answers over Real’s post- Cristiano Ronaldo era.

Real Madrid had won their opening three games in La Liga, scoring four goals in each of their past two games, and they started quickly at the San Mames Stadium with Luka Modric facing an effort blocked in the opening minute. Things seemed set to go well for the visitors when Luka Modric took advantage of some wavering defending to make a first-minute attempt which was blocked by a wall of defenders. Madrid sustained the early movement but they received their first warning just before the quarter-hour mark when Susaeta threaded a pass to Inaki Williams who shot just wide of the target.

Susaeta hit another attempt over the bar, then jumped on a rare blunder by Sergio Ramos but elected to shoot rather than find his better-placed team-mate Williams, and missed his chance. Bilbao came even closer in the 22nd minute when left-back Yuri Berchiche got on the end of a sudden counter-attack but could only fire straight at Thibaut Courtois.

Bilbao ‘keeper Unai Simon refused both Gareth Bale and Marco Asensio before the hosts seized the opener they deserved in the 32nd minute when Susaeta’s ball across the box was shot home by the lurking Muniain. Things could have been even unsatisfactory for Real if Raul Garcia‘s attempt not been ruled out for offside, but it served to show that all was not fine within Lopetegui’s defenders.

Williams blew another chance for Bilbao early in the second half before the course began to turn and Simon was expected to make a magnificent double-save both from Bale’s free-kick and a Ramos follow-up.

Isco pounced in the 63rd minute with an excellent close-range finish using a right-wing cross from Bale. Real Madrid remained in the power as they continued to hunt for the second goal which would have kept their 100 percent start to the new campaign unimpaired.

Bale fired just over the bar and Asensio also shot an attempt just wide as Lopetegui’s men persisted to push, with a plainly exasperating Bilbao side to sit back and seek to utilize the counter-attack. Ramos had the last opportunity for Real when he lashed a long-range free-kick over the bar.

Real Madrid start the defense of their Champions League crown at home to Roma on Wednesday.


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