Real Madrid are back in the La Liga title race after they banked on another Atletico Madrid slip against Levante on Saturday by beating Real Valladolid 1-0.
Real Madrid cranked up the pressure on the league leaders by edging to a win ,Casemiro's second-half header cutting the gap to just three points, albeit with Atletico still owning a game in hand.
Los Blancos victory at the Jose Zorilla Stadium was their fourth in a row, three of those coming with clean sheets, which suggests a return to form for a defence that all but won them the title last season.
To their credit, Zinedine Zidane's side have done it without several key players. Karim Benzema is the latest absentee through injury, joining the likes of Eden Hazard, Sergio Ramos and Dani Carvajal on the sidelines.
It meant a rare start for Mariano Diaz up front against Valladolid, while Isco was the only senior player named by Zidane on the bench.