Highlights: Espanyol 1-3 Real Madrid

Real Madrid struggled for 88 minutes at Espanyol. With the scores tied and time running out, Benzema put Real ahead before sealing a 3-1 victory after 10 eventful added minutes.

Real saved their perfect start to the season and climbed back to the top of the table on nine points after three games, ahead of Real Betis on goal difference.

The defending champions made the perfect start as Vinicius Junior ran on to a sharp diagonal pass in the 12th minute to slide the ball into the far corner and give Real Madrid the lead.

Espanyol fought back. Joselu levelled after 43 minutes. He burst through and when Thibaut Courtois saved his first thump at goal and the ball bounced off Eder Militao, the Espanyol striker beat both Real players to the ball and scuffed it in.

Both teams had chances in the second half before Benzema, as so often in the last year, decided the game. After a quiet game, he found space at the far post with two minutes left, met Rodrygo’s cross and volleyed home from close range.

Deep into frantic added time, Espanyol goalkeeper Benjamin Lecomte, charged out of his box to stop a Real attack and received a red card for a foul on Dani Ceballos.

Benzema fired home the free-kick to settle the contest.