Toni Kroos was sent off in Real Madrid’s 1-1 draw with Girona, as the club returned to the top of the table but dropped LaLiga points for the second time this season.
Los Blancos took the lead at the Santiago Bernabeu with Vinicius Junior’s ninth goal of the season with just over 20 minutes remaining in normal time.
However, Marco Asensio was penalized for handball following a VAR check, and Cristhian Stuani converted from the spot in the 80th minute to secure the victory.
Rodrygo had a late goal disallowed and Kroos was sent off for a second bookable offence as Los Blancos had to settle for a result that inched them a point above Barcelona at the summit, while Girona are out of the relegation zone.
Luka Modric shot wide in the second minute on his return from injury before Valentin Castellanos fired an early warning shot at the other end, drilling narrowly off target.
Rodrygo let fly with a rasping right-foot drive that was superbly tipped wide by Paulo Gazzaniga, but Girona continued to look dangerous and a header from captain Valery Fernandez flashed just past the left post.
A strike from Madrid forward Rodrygo rattled the right post and Yangel Herrera’s left-foot effort for Girona crashed against the crossbar after Fernandez outmuscled Dani Carvajal.
There was a flashpoint early in the second half when David Lopez was perhaps fortune to only be shown a yellow card for a clash with Vinicius, who went down claiming the Girona defender headbutted him.
It was Vinicius who made the breakthrough in the 70th minute, Federico Valverde spinning away from a defender and giving the forward a tap-in from inside the six-yard box.
Gazzaniga brilliantly palmed Asensio’s powerful strike against the bar soon after that opening goal, before the Madrid winger was adjudged to have handled in the box following a VAR check.
Stuani sent Thibaut Courtois the wrong way with a superb spot-kick, and there was more drama when Rodrygo found the back of the net, but the goal was ruled out as Gazzaniga had a hand on the ball when the striker poked it past him.
Kroos was then dismissed for a second bookable offence after a cynical stoppage-time foul as Madrid slipped up.