This day in history of Ronaldo
MADRID, Jan 24 (Reuters) - Ronaldo scored his 16th league goal of the season to help take Real Madrid back to the top of the table on Saturday with a 2-1 win at home to Villarreal.
Argentine midfielder Santiago Solari, playing in place of the injured Zinedine Zidane, opened the scoring after 14 minutes, squeezing a shot under the body of Villarreal keeper Pepe Reina.
Real continued to press and their second goal came nine minutes into the second half when Guti picked up a loose ball on the edge of the box and passed for Ronaldo to sweep into the roof of the net.
Sergio Ballesteros headed in from a corner four minutes from time to give Villarreal hope, but Real held on to extend their perfect home record in the league this season.
Victory for Real took them back above Valencia at the top with 46 points from 21 games. Valencia, with 44 points and a game in hand, will have to win at home to sixth-placed Osasuna on Sunday to reclaim top spot.
Atletico Madrid were looking to consolidate fourth place with victory away to Albacete in a game being played later on Saturday.