18 not out for Messi

A review of the weekend's action in the Spanish Primera Division, with Lionel Messi scoring for the 18th league game in a row.

Last Updated: 18/03/13 at 00:05 Post Comment

Lionel Messi: Has now scored in 18 consecutive league games

Lionel Messi: Has now scored in 18 consecutive league games

More of the games that matter

Upgrade in minutes or watch with a NOW TV Day Pass.

Lionel Messi and David Villa combined to devastating effect to see off Rayo Vallecano 3-1 and help Barcelona restore their 13-point lead at the top of the Primera Division.

Rayo could not handle the partnership which accounted for all three goals - Villa opening the scoring before Messi netted twice to extend his stunning goalscoring record to 18 successive league matches.

The visitors remain in mid-table but can feel satisfied with an enterprising display which saw them create numerous chances before Raul Tamudo grabbed a late consolation.

Atletico Madrid bounced back from last week's home defeat to Real Sociedad - a result which ended their 100 per cent league record at the Vicente Calderon this season - with a 2-0 win at Osasuna.

Diego Costa netted both goals, scoring in the 35th and 48th minutes, as Atletico remained a point behind second-placed Real Madrid.

Malaga, meanwhile, dropped out of the top four for the first time in seven weeks after surprisingly losing 2-0 home to Espanyol.

Second-half goals by Diego Colotto and Sergio Garcia gave the visitors a smash-and-grab victory at La Rosaleda as Malaga, who have progressed through to the quarter-finals of the Champions League, saw their winless run in La Liga stretch to four games.

Sevilla kept their faint hopes of achieving a Europa League place alive with a 4-0 victory over Real Zaragoza, the goals coming from Coke (two), Jose Antonio Reyes and Alvaro Negredo, while Granada drew 1-1 with Levante.

Granada took a 32nd-minute lead through Guilherme Siqueira's penalty but Robert Acquafresca equalised for Levante just five minutes after coming on as a half-time substitute.

On Saturday, Real Madrid had cut Barcelona's lead at the top of the table to 10 points after coming from behind twice to win an exciting home game with Mallorca 5-2.

Emilio Nsue gave the visitors an early lead but Gonzalo Higuain levelled, before Alejandro Alfaro put Gregorio Manzano's side in front again before half-time.

Two smart substitutions by Madrid coach Jose Mourinho at the break gave Los Blancos the lift they needed and goals by Cristiano Ronaldo, Luka Modric, Higuain and Karim Benzema in the second half gave a dominant Madrid the three points.

Valencia overcame the challenge of 10-man Real Betis to climb above their opponents in the table in the race for Champions League qualification.

Roberto Soldado gave the home side the lead from the penalty spot after Antonio Amaya had been dismissed for Betis, before a late own goal from Junior Paulao and a strike from Jonas made sure of the points which lifts Valencia up to fifth.

Betis saw a three-match unbeaten run ended and they now sit seventh, two points behind Ernesto Valverde's men.

Real Sociedad climbed up to fourth place with a resounding 4-1 win over Valladolid at Anoeta.

Two first half goals by Antoine Griezmann and one from Imanol Agirretxe set the Basques on their way to victory, and Xabi Prieto rounded off the win when he netted shortly after the re-start.

Javi Guerra scored a late consolation goal for the visitors in the final stages of the game but it was little use to Miroslav Djukic's side, who were shattered by their opponents decisive finishing in a frantic 20-minute spell.

Borja Fernandez claimed the only goal of the game as Getafe kept their Europa League hopes alive with a 1-0 victory over Athletic Bilbao.

The decisive moment came in the seventh minute when the midfielder lashed the ball home following Pedro Leon's corner.

There were chances at either end to add to the scoring but nobody was able to match Borja's precision as Getafe held out for three points.

Deportivo La Coruna gave their survival hopes a vital boost with a 3-1 victory over 10-man relegation rivals Celta Vigo in the Galician derby on Friday night.

Riki's early goal settled the nerves inside the Riazor and the home fans had further reason for optimism just before the half-hour mark as Iago Aspas was sent off.

Silvio doubled the lead in the 64th minute as the league's bottom side looked to make their man advantage count and substitute Diogo Salomao, who had only come on a minute earlier, wrapped up the points in the 78th minute.

Park Chu-young pulled one back for Celta shortly after, but there was no sensational fightback.

Depor still have plenty of work to do to avoid the drop from the Primera Division, but the win at least took them to within three points of their opponents and six of safety.

It also ended a nine-match winless run in the league, seven of which have been losses.


Click here for completely free £10 bet with Sky Bet & £5 free every week


More of the games that matter

Upgrade in minutes or watch with a NOW TV Day Pass.

Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

T

his is all good fun, but anyone who thinks United are 4th best in England for anything more than a blip is properly f***ing mental. And Domenech is properly f***ing mental.

megabrow (cufc)
Schneiderlin must join United - Domenech

I

f the answer is Matt Phillips, the question should never be Who is one of your major transfer targets?

jelasfirsttouch
The Twosome Gossip

I

s this Chris Smalling playing the 'Race' card?

hump3.
Smalling wants United race

Footer 365

Roberto Firmino eyeing trophy success at Liverpool after saying bye to Hoffenheim

Liverpool's £29m summer signing Roberto Firmino hopes to celebrate "a lot of success" at Anfield and 'can't wait test himself in the Premier League'.

Manchester United 'agree Matteo Darmian fee with Torino'

Manchester United have agreed a fee with Torino for Italy right-back Matteo Darmian, according to Sky Italia sources.

Juventus midfielder Paul Pogba not joining Barcelona this year

Barcelona have insisted they are "not planning" a move for Juventus midfielder Paul Pogba this calendar year.

Mail Box

Doesn't Delph To Arsenal Make More Sense?

We have reaction to our Top Ten regarding Philipp Lahm and Dave Mackay, why we all love Harry Kane, Fabian Delph to Arsenal and what United can get away with...

Why Is Kane More Likeable Than Carrick?

A Mailbox which covers topics including Harry Kane, Sergio Aguero, Robin van Persie, handballs, transfer reporting and Rodgers bingo. It's not us being mean...

© 2015 Sky Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media company