- Real Madrid travelled across Madrid to play Spanish third tier side Fuenlabrada
- Real went ahead in the second half when Marco Asensio scored a penalty
- Lucas Vasquez doubled Zidane’s side’s advantage from the spot 16 minutes later
- Paco Candela was sent off for the hosts eight minutes after coming on
- Real were also reduced to 10 men when Jesus Vallejo was shown a red card
Pete Jenson for MailOnline
Two soft penalties put paid to tiny third tier Spanish club Fuenlabrada’s dream of toppling Real Madrid in the Spanish Cup.
They were beaten 2-0 by Real Madrid in the first leg of the two team’s first round proper Copa del Rey tie with Marco Asensio and Lucas Vazquez rolling in the spot-kicks after silly fouls from Fran Garcia and Paco Candela.
The latter earned a second booking for his offence leaving his team playing the last 10 minutes with 10 men.
Marco Asensio put Real Madrid ahead when he scored from the penalty spot in the second half
Asensio celebrates with his Real Madrid team-mates after scoring the opening goal
FUENLABRADA (4-2-3-1): Codina; Iribas, Diaz, Creavalle, Garcia; Quero, Milla; Fraile, Atienza, Fernandez; Dioni
Booked: Diaz, Garcia, Candela
Sent off: Candela
REAL MADRID (4-4-2): Casilla; Hakimi, Vallejo, Nacho, Hernandez; Lucas, Ceballos, Llorente, Tejero; Mayoral Moya, Asensio
Goals: Asensio (pen) 63, Vasquez (pen) 80
Sent off: Vallejo
Fuenlabrada were unlucky with the first spot kick because Garcia’s foul could easily have been judged to have been outside the area and Zinedine Zidane’s relieved reaction on the bench when the goal went in on 63 minutes spoke volumes for how well the minnows had done up to that point.
Few Fuenlabrada players earn much more than a 1,000 euros a month and the club has just under 1,000 season ticket holders. Last season’s third-place finish in one of Spain’s regional third divisions is their best finish ever.
They had temporary stands erected in their Fernando Torres Stadium boosting the attendance from the usual 4,000 capacity and for long periods it seemed as if the town’s population of 194,000 might have something else to boast about apart from being Torres’ hometown.
Madrid sent out their kids and reserves but their starting eleven still included Spain sensation Asensio and it was his cooly taken spot kick that ended up breaking the underdog’s resolve.
Real Madrid’s Theo Hernandez skips past Fuenlabrada’s Mikel Iribas during the Cup tie
Hernandez brings the ball forward during the first leg of their Copa del Rey tie
Borja Mayoral could have extended Madrid’s lead with 20 minutes left but his header was well-saved by Jordi Codina. He also saved well from Marcos Llorente in the first half pushing his shot onto the bar.
But when Candela pulled back Theo Hernandez under the referee’s nose on 83 minutes he pointed to the spot and Vazquez’s daisy cut execution seemed to trickle under the dive of Codina.
With two minutes left the borderline refereeing decisions for once went with the underdog when Jesus Vallejo was shown a straight red on his debut by Alvaro Gonzalez Gonzalez. His challenge was too late for the ball but he seemed to pull out at the last moment and it was perhaps harsh that he had to make the long walk to the tunnel.
Fuenlabrada kept pushing for a late consolation goal. The veteran defender Cata Diaz tested keeper Kiko Casilla with a late free-kick. He has already played at the Bernabeu. At the end of November his team-mates will have the same chance, although not with any realistic possibility of causing a cup shock.