Real close gap

A review of the weekend's action in the Spanish Primera Division, including a 5-1 victory for Real Madrid.

Last Updated: 30/09/12 at 22:45 Post Comment

Cristiano Ronaldo celebrates one his goals for Real

Cristiano Ronaldo celebrates one his goals for Real

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A review of the weekend's action in the Spanish Primera Division.

Real Madrid reduced the gap at the top of the Primera Division to eight points ahead of next week's El Clasico as Cristiano Ronaldo's hat-trick led to a 5-1 victory over Deportivo.

Riki had given the visitors a shock lead on 15 minutes but Real were level seven minutes later when Ronaldo scored from the penalty spot after Manuel Pablo had brought down Angel Di Maria.

And the hosts were in cruise control by half-time as Di Maria and Ronaldo nodded in from close range just before the break.

Pepe headed in the fourth 25 minutes from time following Xabi Alonso's free-kick, before Ronaldo completed his hat-trick with another penalty after Evaldo had been harshly adjudged to have handled Kaka's cross.

Atletico Madrid returned to second place with a solitary goal by Raul Garcia enough to see off rock-bottom Espanyol and guide the Rojiblancos to within two points of Barcelona.

Raul Garcia headed home a superb cross from the right by Juanfran but, despite claiming their fifth straight league win, they were not wholly impressive and were stretched by an Espanyol side who remain anchored to the bottom of La Liga with just one point.

Valladolid put a three-game losing streak behind them in emphatic fashion by thrashing Rayo Vallecano 6-1 thanks to braces from Manucho and Oscar Gonzalez.

Alejandro Dominguez had fired Rayo into the lead after just five minutes, but that was as good it would get for the visitors as two goals in three minutes from Alberto Bueno and Manucho put Valladolid in front.

Oscar then got his first with a lovely chip over Ruben Martinez before Omar Ramos teed up Antonio Rukavina to fire in a fourth before half-time.

The chances continued to flow for the hosts in the second half and, after Oscar had stroked home the fifth on 55 minutes, Manucho capped a wonderful individual display by smashing in his second five minutes from time.

Two goals in the opening 20 minutes were enough to hand Granada their first victory of the season as they withstood a second-half onslaught from Celta Vigo to win 2-1 at Nuevo Los Carmenes.

Guilherme Siqueira had given the home side the lead from the penalty spot after 11 minutes and the Brazilian left-back then brilliantly set up Gabriel Torje to double the advantage moments later.

Iago Aspas quickly reduced the arrears for Celta and the hosts were thankful to goalkeeper Tono as he made a number of fine saves after the break, most notably to deny Park Chu-young an equaliser two minutes from time.

Four second-half goals - three in the last eight minutes - saw Osasuna wrap up their first victory of the season as they despatched a poor Levante side 4-0 in La Liga.

Emiliano Armenteros opened the scoring 10 minutes after the break before Roland Lamah (82), a David Timor penalty a minute from time and Nino's injury-time strike wrapped up a resounding victory of which there had been little indication after a poor first half.

Victory guides Osasuna, who started the game bottom with just one point, to 17th while Levante remain 11th.

On Saturday, Barcelona maintained their 100 per cent start to the new campaign with a thrilling 3-2 victory at 10-man Sevilla.

Tito Vilanova's men appeared to be heading for defeat when Piotr Trochowski and Alvaro Negredo fired Sevilla into a deserved 2-0 lead, but Cesc Fabregas' brace pulled Barca level before substitute David Villa secured the win in stoppage time.

Sevilla were not helped by the 72nd-minute dismissal of Gary Medel following a clash with Fabregas, with Barca's final two goals coming while the hosts were attempting to hold on with 10 men.

Barca's sixth win in as many games leaves them four points clear of Malaga at the summit, while Sevilla stay in fifth after their first defeat of the campaign.

Malaga moved into second place for 24 hours at least as they cruised to a 4-0 win over 10-man Real Betis at La Rosaleda.

The visitors got off to the worst possible start as keeper Casto was sent off after just 11 minutes for bringing down Eliseu inside the area and Joaquin confidently stroked home the penalty.

Javier Saviola then continued his great form with the second just before the half-hour and the hosts' fine afternoon was rounded off in the final 20 minutes when Antonio Amaya could only direct Nacho Monreal's cross into his own net before Isco dinked in the fourth moments later.

Valencia recorded only their second victory of the new Primera Division season after easing past Real Zaragoza 2-0 at the Mestalla.

Sofiane Feghouli opened the scoring for Los Che in the 12th minute and Jonathan Viera doubled the advantage just before the hour mark.

The dismissal of Feghouli moments later meant Valencia were left facing a nervy final half-hour, but Mauricio Pellegrino's men held on for a much-needed victory following their disappointing start to the campaign.

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terling needs to be told though that upon entering the Arsenal squad he will re-enact the final scene from Highlander where he will be thrown around a warehouse by cartoon dragons and then be a mere mortal that will only ever spend three to four weeks a season playing football and the rest on the physio's bed. There can be only one.....player available at The Emirates.

rodger's gusset
Arsenal interest in Sterling

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he game changed in our favour when Carrick came on. We were able to play further up the pitch due to having a player who can give and go with the ball and keep possession. Yet barkley made some runs and Townsend scored a good goal but carrick's inclusion and chiellini's withdrawal made the biggest difference to the flow of the game

ricky villa
Hodgson: Barkley was brilliant

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o, you've not silenced anyone Andros, i'm afraid. We know you can score a great goal, and it's really handy to have your direct running and willingness to shoot on the bench. But until you can do the other things expected of a winger (beat the man, put a decent cross in, stay wide etc) then you can't expect more than a regular cameo. Wonderful goal though, what a hit! No wonder Buffon wanted the shirt.

badwolf
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