Cristiano Ronaldo missed his third penalty of the season for Real Madrid against Sevilla at the Bernabeu on Sunday night.
The Portuguese superstar, taking his 11th spot-kick of the campaign, stepped up in the 58th minute - with Real Madrid already leading 1-0, thanks to Karim Benzema’s early opener - but blazed his penalty high over the crossbar.
You can’t keep a good man - or an exceptional footballer, for that matter - down for too long, though. Ronaldo notched his 41st goal of the season six minutes later and apologised to the home crowd for his missed penalty during his celebration. (Scroll down this page to watch both videos).
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Ronaldo has now scored 28 goals in his last 22 appearances for Los Blancos.
Gareth Bale and Jesé added gloss to the scoreline with two more goals for Real Madrid, who stay third in La Liga but have closed the gap on Atletico Madrid and leaders Barcelona.
Video: Ronaldo misses penalty
Video: Ronaldo scores and apologises to fans
Atletico and Barcelona drop points
Atletico suffered a surprise 2-1 defeat at Sporting Gijon on Saturday, despite taking the lead through Antoine Griezmann, while Barcelona were held to a 2-2 draw by Villarreal.
Real Madrid now have a chance to close the gap on fierce rivals Barcelona to seven points by winning their next league match: El Clasico, which takes place on the first weekend after the international break.
Zidane delighted with performance
Speaking after the emphatic win over Sevilla, Zinedine Zidane was quoted by Spanish newspaper AS as saying: “I'm very pleased with the game we put in - from start to finish. Before tonight's match I said that the work we put in this week was the best we've ever done and this is the fruit of all of that work. I'm happy.
“This is one of the best performances we've had since I arrived in the job. We've put in some good games at the Bernabéu and this is one more. I don't know if it was the best but I'm happy with how it went”.
On the Clasico, Zidane continued: “It's a significant game because it's a special match. We have to continue improving. It's better to go into it on the back of a win. We've shown a lot with tonight's performance. We know that we're ready. It'll be a great game between two great sides”.
And Zidane is realistic about the chances of catching Barcelona. The French coach admitted that Los Blancos are now playing for second place - and the Champions League, of course - with Barca now firm favourites to secure the league title.
“The objective is to overtake Atlético and move into second place,” he added. “That's the challenge we face. We need to continue picking up points and prepare for what's coming up. That's the best way to confront the game to come”.
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