Ronaldo double keeps Madrid on course for Liga title as Barca stay in race
Real Madrid 4 - 1 Sevilla

Ronaldo double keeps Madrid on course for Liga title as Barca stay in race

Cristiano Ronaldo passed 400 competitive goals for Real Madrid with a brace as the title hopefuls defeated Sevilla 4-1 at the Bernabeu.

After Nacho Fernandez had given Madrid a controversial 10th-minute lead with a quickly-taken free-kick, Ronaldo reached the milestone with a simple tap-in to make it 2-0 in the 23rd minute.

The 32-year-old Portugal forward, who already boasts a host of goalscoring records for the Spanish giants, reached the 400-goal mark in what was just his 391st match for the club

The impressive Stevan Jovetic halved the deficit for Sevilla just after the interval but Real's all-time record goalscorer Ronaldo ensured the points would be staying in the capital with his second of the night.

Toni Kroos then added gloss to the win as Real stayed level-pegging with leaders Barcelona at the top of LaLiga, the defending champions beating Las Palmas by the same scoreline.

Real still boast a game in hand on Barca, which they will play at out-of-form Celta Vigo on Wednesday, before the Spanish title is decided in next weekend's final round of matches.

This fixture has rarely disappointed in terms of goals and entertainment, and Sevilla again contributed fully to another humdinger.

The Andalusian side twice hit the woodwork through Jovetic in the first half and could consider themselves unlucky to have been 2-0 down at the break.

They certainly felt they should not have gone behind to Nacho's goal early on.

Sevilla were still looking to build a defensive wall after conceding a free-kick on the edge of their box when the quick-thinking Nacho calmly walked up and curled a shot past Sergio Rico, who was rooted to his spot as the ball flew into the net.

The visitors were furious that the goal was allowed to stand, surrounding the referee in protest, but it made no difference.

Sevilla's mood barely improved as, in the space of three minutes, they just missed out on an equaliser when Jovetic's shot hit the post, saw Keylor Navas deny the same player with his feet, and then fall 2-0 behind.

Rico parried James Rodriguez's shot and Ronaldo was in the right place to roll his shot into an empty net and reach 400 official goals for the club.

Sevilla refused to be broken, however, and Joaquin Correa saw an effort awkwardly saved by Navas before Jovetic again hit the frame of the goal, this time with a superb chip that came back off the bar.

Jovetic had another chance before the interval but he had to wait until the 49th minute to finally get the goal he deserved, the on-loan Inter Milan striker curling home from the edge of the area.

The visitors pushed for an equaliser but their hopes came to an end in the 78th minute thanks, once again, to Ronaldo, who fired into the roof of the net for his 37th goal of the season.

Kroos helped set up that strike and it was the Germany international who rounded things off when he slid in Real's fourth six minutes from time.

Real's win keeps them on course for their first Spanish title since 2012 while the silver lining for Sevilla is that, despite the loss, they are now guaranteed to finish fourth after Villarreal were held by Deportivo La Coruna.

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