With seven games to go, second-place Real Madrid’s chances for the title are slim, with 65 points, 11 behind Barcelona, which can increase its lead when it faces 10th-place Rayo Vallecano on Wednesday.
Castellanos proved to be one to destroy the ball, scoring twice early in each half, while Vinicius Jr. made the score 2-1 and Lucas Vazquez scored a late consolation goal.
The last time someone scored four or more goals for Real Madrid in La Liga games was in December 1947, when Esteban Echavarria scored five goals for Real Oviedo.
Girona, ranked ninth in La Liga with 41 points, has been an unpleasant opponent for Real this season, and the return match at the Santiago Bernabeu in October ended 1-1.
They outclassed their guests on Tuesday, taking advantage of Real Madrid’s undisciplined defense.
The hosts stunned Real Madrid with their first goal in the 12th minute of the match, when Castellanos shot on goal from close range after a Miguel Gutiérrez pass.
Twelve minutes later, Girona doubled their lead when Castellanos picked up a long ball, burst into the penalty area and shot low under Real’s goalkeeper Andrei Lunin.
Real Madrid’s Vinicius Jr. reduced the deficit in the 34th minute when, unmarked at the far post, he headed the ball into Marco Asensio’s goal.
Castellanos, however, scored his third goal 36 seconds into the second half with a right-footed shot after Real’s defense gave him space in the box.
The 24-year-old Argentine was again left alone in the penalty box and scored his fourth goal of the evening and 11th in La Liga this season in the 62nd minute before being substituted 10 minutes later.
Real Madrid’s Vazquez scored from close range in the 85th minute.
Foxes stunned the soccer world by winning the title in 2016 by being a 5,000-to-1 underdog. Now they’re trying to beat the odds again, securing major league survival in a season when the threat of relegation was never far away.
Although Tuesday’s 1-1 draw with rival Leeds gave Leicester little, it showed the fighting spirit that is necessary if the club wants to avoid relegation.
This is optimistic because these are good players. We can be a good team, manager Dean Smith said. If we get rid of lapses in concentration after interceptions, we’ll be fine.
Veteran striker Jamie Vardy reeled back the years, tying the score in the 80th minute after Luis Sinistra gave Leeds the lead.
Vardy was the talisman of Leicester’s title success, scoring 24 goals. Coming on as a substitute at Elland Road, he looked as lethal as ever as he shot past Illan Mesliere, but at the age of 36, he is becoming an increasingly minor figure.
Vardy’s goal Tuesday was his first league goal since October.
How Leicester could use Vardy’s peak to help save him in the latter stages of the season.
Good for him as it hasn’t been a fruitful season, but it’s (nice) to see him scoring in his five remaining games, Smith said.
A draw with Leeds leaves Leicester one point and one place above the relegation zone, and the bottom three teams played one less game.
But Leicester can take solace in the fact that it has a history of escaping.
Although success in the title fight is widely regarded as the greatest in league history, the Foxes’ achievement the previous season was remarkable in itself, when a seven-game winning streak in their last nine games allowed them to rise from the bottom of the table and avoid relegation.
Leeds are also in the thick of the battle to stay up in 16th place, one point ahead of Leicester.
The dressing room is very disappointed, but we have a point and we have to play five games, being ready to be on top, manager Javi Gracia said.
VILLA IN FIVETH PLACE
Aston Villa looked in danger of relegation when Unai Emery took charge of the team in October.
His predecessor Steven Gerrard left the club with only two wins in the league, and the team was one place above the top three.
Emery spectacularly reversed Villa’s fortunes with Tuesday’s 1-0 victory over Fulham to climb to fifth place and qualify for the Europa League.
Villa’s rise came after 10 matches without losses, including eight wins.
Tyrone Mings scored the only goal of the game against Fulham.
We are in the top 10. We’re in Europe, Emery said. ‘There are still Liverpool, Tottenham and Brighton and we will fight with them, but with every match we win it gives us confidence and a chance to get there.
Wolverhampton move up to 13th after beating Crystal Palace 2-0, and security in the top division is within reach.
Joachim Andersen scored an own goal three minutes later, and Ruben Neves, with a penalty kick in the compensatory time, secured the three points.
Julen Lopetegui’s team is now nine points ahead of the relegation zone, having recovered from a setback after losing to group exit rival Leicester at the weekend.
We are happy, Lopetegui said. Three days ago we were upset, but today we are happy because we got a good win against a good team. We had to suffer, but we won.