Atletico keep tabs on Barcelona

A review of the weekend's action in the Spanish Primera Division, as Atletico Madrid keep pace with Barcelona.

Last Updated: 06/10/13 at 22:35 Post Comment

Diego Costa scored twice in Atletico win

Diego Costa scored twice in Atletico win

Diego Costa scored twice and also missed a penalty as Atletico Madird kept up the pressure on Primera Division leaders Barcelona with a 2-1 win over Celta Vigo.

The Brazilian striker missed from the spot in the first half but netted either side of the break to draw his side back level on points with Barcelona at the top of the table.

Celta's consolation goal came from Nolito, but they were not able to grab a share of the spoils.

Getafe moved into the European places after comfortably beating Real Betis 3-1 at home.

Luis Garcia's side scored three goals in 11 frantic first-half minutes - the first two coming from Pedro Leon while Adrian Colunga grabbed the third.

Betis had hopes of staging a comeback when Getafe defender Rafa scored an own goal early into the second period, but the hosts held firm to record their third straight victory.

Valencia were denied a fourth straight league win as they were held to a 1-1 draw at Athletic Bilbao.

Ever Banega had given Miroslav Djukic's the lead at the end of the first half, but Mikel Rico cancelled it out with 14 minutes remaining.

The result means Athletic remain sixth in the Primera Division, one place above Valencia thanks to a superior goal difference, with both teams on 13 points.

Sevilla moved out of the relegation zone by beating local rivals Almeria 2-1 with a stoppage-time winner from Ivan Rakitic.

Kevin Gameiro had given a bright-looking Sevilla side an early lead but Rodri levelled midway through the first half.

Sevilla then dropped off in the second half until Rakitic converted from close range in the second minute of stoppage time to heap further agony on Almeria, who remain bottom of the league having conceded at least two goals in every game.

Furthermore, Francisco's side have now let in decisive last-minute goals in four of their eight league matches.

On Saturday, Cristiano Ronaldo scored a 94th-minute winner for the second successive away game as Real Madrid got out of jail with a 3-2 victory at Levante.

After a goalless first half, Papa Baba Diawara gave Levante a lead which was swiftly cancelled out by Sergio Ramos.

Levante struck in the 86th minute through Nabil El Zhar only for Madrid substitute Alvaro Morata to again restore parity in the 90th minute before a deflected strike from Ronaldo - whose last-gasp penalty sank Elche last week - sealed another dramatic win.

Barcelona made it eight wins out of eight with a comprehensive 4-1 dismissal of Real Valladolid at the Nou Camp.

A brace from Alexis Sanchez allied to further efforts from Xavi and Neymar saw the league leaders to a 4-1 win after Valladolid had threatened to cause an upset when Javi Guerra fired them into a 10th-minute lead.

Barca move onto a maximum 24 points, a record matched only by Atletico following their Sunday victory.

Elche saw off Espanyol 2-1 to win at home for the first time in the league this season.

The hosts bossed the first half and deservedly took the lead six minutes before half-time through former Espanyol player Coro, but Espanyol were rejuvenated after the break, leading to Thievy Bifouma pulling them level on 65 minutes.

The visitors looked as if they would go on and win the game as they continued to press Manu Herrera's goal, but Coro got his second goal with little more than a quarter of an hour remaining, which was enough to deliver a 2-1 win and all three points.

Substitute Jonathan Viera converted a late penalty to see off Real Sociedad 1-0 and give Rayo Vallecano their first win in seven matches.

The Madrid side had been the better team in the opening 45 minutes, in which they hit the woodwork twice, but dropped their intensity in the second half, with Real Sociedad squandering a number of chances.

The visitors were made to pay for their wastefulness when Viera was fouled by Claudio Bravo in the 88th minute, and the 23-year-old made no mistake from the spot to double Rayo's points tally and take them off the bottom of the table and up to 19th, with one point fewer than the Basques.

On Friday night, Villarreal put their first league defeat of the season behind them in style at El Madrigal as they brushed aside Granada 3-0.

The Yellow Submarine had experienced few problems on their return to the top flight until they were beaten at Real Betis last weekend.

They found the best cure to be on the field, though, and goals from Bruno, Giovani Dos Santos and Tomas Pina were more than enough to see off Granada.

Osasuna caused an upset at La Rosaleda as they defeated Malaga to record only their second win of the season.

Oriol Riera's goal during an impressive first-half showing from the Pamplona side settled the contest as Osasuna, who had lost six of their seven games coming into the match, recorded their first away triumph since March.


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lassic management. Build them up and then knock them back. Raise expectations and then dampen them. Create a dynamic where by you demand the most from your team, but where the team are given room to manoeuvre unexpected or unwanted results. Classy work by Van Gaal, he really reminds me a lot of me. A smart cookie, make no doubt.

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e will be the England left back for ten years or more, and then you will have to thank MUFC for that. *smiles*

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urely because of that little diva moment he had last night, I don't want him coming to my club. DESTROYED ? Grow up and give something back to the club that helped put you up there on the world stage.

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