Gareth Bale.

Watch: Gareth Bale scores with first and last touch in Real Madrid opener

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Real Madrid kicked off their La Liga campaign without either Cristiano Ronaldo or Karim Benzema in the starting lineup tonight.

You might think being without two players who combined for 59 league goals last campaign might have had Los Blancos fans a little worried as they took on Real Sociedad away from home.

As it turns out, though, Gareth Bale didn't give them enough time to be concerned, opening the scoring after just 72 seconds, with his very first touch. Not content with his efforts, the Welshman scored a second with his last kick of the game to seal a comfortable 3-0 win.


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Bale only returned to Madrid a few weeks ago after being given an extended break following his heroic exploits for Wales at Euro 2016, so you might think he would be a little rusty after fewer pre-season games for Zidane's men.

Bale isn't your typical footballer, however, so the fact he opened the season by scoring his fastest ever goal for Madrid - a bullet header inside two minutes - should no longer surprise anyone.

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Despite resting several key players for their opening fixture of the 2016/17 La Liga campaign, Real were never truly troubled by Sociedad on Sunday night.

Young debutant Marco Asensio added a second before half time as last year's Champions League winners eased into the new domestic campaign.

And, just when it looked like they'd have to settle for a 2-0 win, Bale turns on the gas in the final seconds of the game to put the icing on the cake of both his and Real's evening.

Heading into the season after his summer exploits at Euro 2016, there are big things expected of the Welshman and his start tonight is certainly a good way to begin.

Playing more centrally with both Benzema and Ronaldo sitting out, Bale also proved to Zidane that he can be the focal point of the team - an important point as Madrid start what will be another gruelling campaign on multiple fronts.

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Gareth Bale
Karim Benzema
La Liga
Real Madrid
Cristiano Ronaldo
UEFA Champions League

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