Pique fumes as Real Madrid benefit from controversial decision

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Gerard Pique stoked the fires of controversy by suggesting Real Madrid's generous penalty against Villarreal was the latest in a string of bad decisions to benefit Zinedine Zidane's men.

Madrid managed to salvage a 3-2 win at Estadio de la Ceramica on Sunday despite being 2-0 down, but the victory was secured with more than a hint of fortune.

Cristiano Ronaldo scored the equaliser from the penalty spot, with referee Jesus Manzano penalising Bruno Soriano for an apparent handball after Toni Kroos' shot was cleared onto him by a team-mate.

Villarreal were left exasperated by the decision and Pique - whose Barcelona team won 2-1 at Atletico Madrid earlier on Sunday thanks to a late Lionel Messi goal - was similarly unimpressed, going on Twitter to highlight previous instances when Real have profited in controversial circumstances this season.

Alongside clippings of stories from Madrid-based publications, Pique wrote: "Against the same teams. 8 points [swing]. 8 and such. Those cuts are from press of Madrid to avoid doubt."

The result leaves Madrid one point ahead of Barca at LaLiga's summit, with Zidane's men also having a game in hand.