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 By Rob Train

Asensio comes to lethargic Madrid's rescue in late win over Leganes

Following a Spanish media report saying the majority of Real Madrid supporters want Ronaldo to leave the club, Gab Marcotti and the FC panel dive into the implications.

Real Madrid take a one-goal advantage back to the Bernabeu for the second leg of the Copa del Rey quarterfinal tie against Leganes courtesy of Marco Asensio's 88th-minute winner, but the visitors scarcely deserved more than a 0-0 draw. That Lega, in the last eight for the first time in their 89-year history, did not go for the jugular of a struggling Madrid was a surprise, but neither side evoked the magic of the cup in a game that will not linger long in the memory.

Positives

Other than Asensio's...

Zinedine Zidane hopes win is 'turning point' for Real Madrid

Following a Spanish media report saying the majority of Real Madrid supporters want Ronaldo to leave the club, Gab Marcotti and the FC panel dive into the implications.

Real Madrid coach Zinedine Zidane said he hoped his team had turned a corner following a difficult recent time, when speaking after Thursday's Copa del Rey 1-0 quarterfinal win at Leganes.

With unsettled Cristiano Ronaldo rested along with fellow galactico Gareth Bale, a side of youngsters and reserves struggled to turn possession into chances, with their only opportunity of the first half caused by a mistake by home midfielder Ruben Perez and missed by Mateo Kovacic.

Leganes came out more after...

 By PA Sport

Marco Asensio's late winner lifts Real in Copa first leg at Leganes

LeganesLeganes
Real MadridReal Madrid
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Leg 1
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Following a Spanish media report saying the majority of Real Madrid supporters want Ronaldo to leave the club, Gab Marcotti and the FC panel dive into the implications.

Marco Asensio's late strike earned Real Madrid a 1-0 first-leg lead in their Copa del Rey quarterfinal with Leganes.

Mateo Kovavic spurned a great opportunity for Real, whose goalkeeper Kiko Casilla made a good save to deny Claudio Beauvue after 75 minutes.

And Real took advantage after 89 minutes when Theo Hernandez's cross was met by Asensio's fine volley from six yards out.

The win at the Estadio Municipal de Butarque in the outskirts of Madrid gives Real an advantage ahead of next Wednesday's...

Oscar Melendo: 'Unforgettable' to score first senior goal vs. Barcelona

The ESPN FC panel discuss Lionel Messi's penalty struggles following his latest miss against Espanyol in the Copa del Rey.

Espanyol midfielder Oscar Melendo was elated after scoring his first professional goal against Barcelona on Wednesday.

Melendo, 20, came on as a substitute and struck two minutes from time to give Espanyol a 1-0 advantage in the Copa del Rey quarterfinal first leg -- Barca's first defeat since Aug. 16.

"It's been a special night," Melendo told Onda Cero radio. "This is my first goal with Espanyol and as a professional.

"To score it against our city rivals is unforgettable. I've kept the jersey --...

Barcelona lose unbeaten run but no obituaries as Valverde plots return to winning ways

The FC crew rate the latest rumours as the transfer window hots up.

A lot can change in 153 days. In fact, a lot can change in three days, as Ernesto Valverde regularly points out when encouraged to get carried away by Barcelona's brilliant season so far. But despite being nine points clear at the top of the league, 19 ahead of Real Madrid (who are fourth) and safely through to the Champions League knockout stages, Valverde refuses to get giddy. Instead, he prefers to centre in on football's more capricious qualities.

And there's nowhere where those qualities can...