Madrid crush Espanyol to claim 35th Spanish top flight title

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Real Madrid claimed a record-extending 35th top flight Spanish title on Saturday night following a 4-0 annihilation of Espanyol.

Following second-placed Sevilla's 1-1 draw on Friday night against Cadiz, Madrid went into the game at the Santiago Bernabeu knowing that a draw would furnish them with the crown.

But in front of an expectant Santiago Bernabeu, Carlo Ancelotti's side poured on the style to sweep to glory.

Rodrygo started the party in the 33rd minute. The 21-year-old Brazilian played a neat one-two with his compatriot Marcelo and slotted the ball past the Espanyol goalkeeper Diego Lopez.

Rodrygo scored his second of the game just before the pause to put the hosts in driving seat.

Marco Asensio added the third 11 minutes into the second-half and skipper Karim Benzema struck his 26th league goal of the season to add the gloss nine minutes from time.

Feat

The title allowed Ancelotti to enter the history books. The 62-year-old Italian became the the first man to coach title-winning teams in each of Europe's top five leagues.

In 2004, he guided AC Milan to the Serie A crown in Italy. Six years later, his Chelsea outfit claimed the English Premier League.

In 2013, Ancelotti too Paris Saint-Germain side won Ligue 1 and four years later he was in control as Bayern Munich won their fifth successive Bundesliga crown.

Madrid's players celebrated their triumph by hurling Ancelotti into the air.

Pride

“I'm very proud of this achievement,” he said once returned to terra firma.

"To win with Real Madrid is very special. This is the first time for me to win a league title at the Bernabéu ... the atmosphere here is special."

Ancelotti first coached Madrid between 2013 and 2015. During his reign, Madrid won the 2014 Champions League, the Club World Cup, the Uefa Super Cup and the Copa del Rey.

But the newly anointed champions will not be able to carouse following their exploits.

On Wednesday night in Madrid, Ancelotti's men will try to overturn a 4-3 deficit to see off Manchester City and advance to the final of the 2022 Champions League.

City, who lost last year's final to Chelsea, prepared for the second leg of the semi-final with a 4-0 victory in the Premier League at relegation-threatened Leeds United.

Pep Guardiola's side went into the game at Elland Road trailing Liverpool by two points after they won at Newcastle United.

Liverpool, who play on Tuesday night in the Champions League against Villareal, lie one point behind the pacesetters with four games remaining.

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