Atletico and Sevilla win

Diego Costa's second-half double sent Atletico Madrid top of the table after victory over Levante, while Sevilla enjoyed an impressive win at Villarreal.

Last Updated: 21/12/13 at 23:19 Post Comment

Diego Costa: Scored twice as Atletico beat Levante 3-2

Diego Costa: Scored twice as Atletico beat Levante 3-2

Real Sociedad picked up three points away from home against Granada as Almeria got the better of fellow strugglers Real Betis.

Atletico Madrid overcame an almighty scare to beat Levante 3-2 and go top of the Primera Division, albeit potentially for just 24 hours.

Levante took a shock early lead when left-back Nikos Karabelas split the Atleti defence with a low pass and Andreas Ivanschitz ran through and his shot ricocheted off the foot of goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois and into the far corner.

Just before the half-hour mark, Atleti equalised when Juanfran crossed into the box again after his initial attempt was sent back to him, and this time it cleared the defence and landed on the head of Diego Godin, who headed past Keylor Navas.

Atleti were in front inside the opening two minutes of the second half when Diego Costa volleyed home from just outside the six-yard box after Gabi had sent in a free-kick.

But Levante levelled on 56 minutes when Koke was dispossessed by Pedro Rios following an Atleti corner and the winger ran through the middle of the pitch unchallenged before placing his shot beyond the reach of Courtois.

Diego Simeone's side claimed all three points on 77 minutes, though, when Costa slammed home a penalty after Gabi was tripped by Ruben Garcia.

Sevilla continued their excellent recent run of form by beating Villarreal 2-1 away from home to move up to seventh place.

The visitors went ahead on 24 minutes when Ivan Rakitic launched a free-kick from 40 plus yards into the box and Juan Cala's looping header sailed over the head of a stranded Sergio Asenjo.

Unai Emery's side increased their lead on 71 minutes when Mateo Musacchio made a mess of a clearance which went straight to Carlos Bacca, who pounced on the loose ball and buried it in the net.

Villarreal were handed a lifeline in the 86th minute when Jaume Costa was tripped in the box by Cala and the defender was sent off, with substitute Jeremy Perbet sending Beto the wrong way from the spot, but Sevilla held on.

Carlos Vela scored a goal in each half as Real Sociedad moved up to fifth in the table after a 3-1 win away to Granada.

Former Arsenal striker Vela opened the scoring on 29 minutes before Piti drew Granada level eight minutes later.

However, Antoine Griezmann restored Sociedad's advantage three minutes before half-time and Vela made certain of the points with his second of the game on 64 minutes.

Ramon Azeez's early goal was enough for Almeria to claim a much-needed 1-0 win over fellow strugglers Real Betis.

Azeez drilled home from 30 yards in only the third minute to lift Almeria out of the bottom three and into 15th place while Betis remain rooted to the bottom of the standings.

Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

H

e deserved respect for forging a successful football career despite being, clearly, made from balsa wood.

Nutboy
Wenger: Diaby deserves respect

L

iverpool should put in a bid for Barkley. As cheeky as it may sound, only he looks capable enough to replace Gerrard.

paulay8
Gerrard's Decay Becoming Sadly Apparent

M

y emotions were not mixed. Super professional that he is. I will never look at you the same way Frank. Love affair over.

gittoplo
Lampard: Mixed emotions

Footer 365

Transfer news: Juventus never considered signing Mario Balotelli in the summer

Juventus general director Beppe Marotta has confirmed the club never considered signing Mario Balotelli in the summer.

Premier League: Phil Neville wants Manchester United to spend another £100m

Phil Neville says Man United need to spend another £100m on their squad before they can be considered title contenders.

Sunderland's Santiago Vergini earns Argentina call-up

Sunderland defender Santiago Vergini has been called up by Argentina for the friendlies against Brazil and Hong Kong.

Mail Box

Should Gerrard Play Further Forward?

That's one shout in a mailbox that recalls Rafa Benitez saying the Liverpool man would one day end up as a striker. Plus, thoughts on Rooney and 500 words on Ipswich...

Will Rodgers Finally Drop Gerrard?

The mailbox wants to know if Brendan Rodgers has the stones to drop Steven Gerrard. Plus, thoughts on Wayne Rooney's display, sitting down, and thanking United fans...

© 2014 British Sky Broadcasting Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media property