La Liga Results: Analysis for Vallodolid vs Osasuna, and the Weekend's Matches
The injured Argentina international will be absent for up to eight weeks with a leg-muscle problem, starting with the visit of Granada on Saturday.
Sevilla 4-0 Betis: Home Side Dominate in Heated Seville Derby
Sevilla revelled in a one-sided derby victory over 10-man Real Betis on Sunday evening.
The home side ensured their arch-rivals remain rooted to the bottom of La Liga following an emphatic 4-0 win, with goals from Carlos Bacca, Stephen Mbia, Vitolo and Vicente Iborra sealing the victory.
Betis were not aided by the 42nd minute sending off of centre-back Paulao, who was given his marching orders for two yellow cards in quick succession—indiscretions compounded when Mbia doubled Sevilla's advantage just moments after the Brazilian left the pitch.
Sevilla now sit eighth after their latest three points.
Levante 0-3 Villarreal: Ikechukwu Uche Double Sinks 10-Man Levante
Ikechukwu Uche scored twice as Villarreal continued their impressive form since returning to La Liga with a 3-0 win at Levante.
But the visitors were helped to victory by the dismissal of home goalkeeper Keylor Navas, who was shown a straight red card for bringing down Uche inside the area in the 10th minute of the game.
Midfielder Bruno scored the subsequent penalty to give Villarreal the lead, but it was not until the 74th minute that the visitors finally found a second goal when Uche struck with a low drive into the corner of the net from Bruno's pass.
The Nigeria international added his second in the 89th with a terrific overhead kick to cement Villarreal's fourth place in the table, seven points behind Real Madrid, who are third.
Real Valladolid 0-1 Osasuna
Substitute Oier Sanjurjo Mate struck an 84th-minute winner at Real Valladolid on Friday to lift Osasuna out of the relegation zone in the La Liga table.
The Spanish forward had replaced Roberto Torres in the 68th minute of the game and was on hand to head home a cross from Lolo to give his improving team a vital three points.
The victory lifted Osasuna up to 15th place in the table from second bottom and above their opponents.
However, the defeat extended Valladolid's winless sequence to four league matches.
On target: 3-3
Barcelona 4-0 Granada
Four different players scored as Barcelona won 4-0 at home to Granada on Saturday.
Andres Iniesta and Cesc Fabregas converted first-half penalties to give Barca a 2-0 lead at the break. Alexis Sanchez (71') and Pedro (90') added second-half goals to seal victory.
The win stretched Barcelona's lead atop the table to six points over Atletico Madrid, who played later Saturday. In the process, Barca maintained their 100 percent home record this season.
Before the match, the injured Lionel Messi displayed his Golden Boot award, which he won as Europe's top scorer last season.
On target: 8-3
Real Sociedad 4-3 Celta Vigo
Carlos Vela scored four times as Real Sociedad edged Celta Vigo 4-3 in a seven-goal thriller on Saturday.
Vela opened the scoring in the sixth minute, only for Celta to take a 3-1 lead by the 56th minute. The Mexican forward grabbed goals in the 61st and 78th minutes to pull Sociedad back into the match, then bagged the winner nine minutes from time.
Rafinha (23', 56') scored twice for Celta. Alex Lopez had the other goal.
The win sent into sixth place, ahead of of Getafe on goal differential. Getafe were set to play at Atletico Madrid later Saturday. Celta remained in the relegation zone with 12 points.
On target: 12-5
Almeria 0-5 Real Madrid
Cristiano Ronaldo scored in the third minute, and four different players tallied in the second half, as Real Madrid won 5-0 at Almeria on Saturday.
Madrid registered 35 shots, 15 of which hit the target. Carlo Ancelotti's side completed 88 percent of their passes and held 61 percent ball possession in a dominant display.
Ronaldo opened the scoring early, turning in Isco's cross from the right. The 1-0 scoreline held up until the second half, when the floodgates opened.
Karim Benzema curled in Real's second in the 61st minute, before Gareth Bale made it 3-0 after a defensive miscue 11 minutes later.
Isco made it 4-0 before Alvaro Morata's silky chip (pictured) from Casemiro's through ball completed the rout.
The win put Real Madrid on 32 points, eight behind leaders Barcelona. Almeria are 15th with 13 points.
On target: 4-15
Atletico Madrid 6-0 Getafe
Atletico Madrid kept pace with league leaders Barcelona with an impressive 6-0 win at home to local rivals Getafe on Saturday.
Raul Garcia and David Villa scored twice each, and Diego Costa added a goal for Atleti, who moved onto 37 points, three behind Barca. The sixth goal was a Getafe own-goal.
Garcia gave Atleti a 1-0 lead in the 26th minute, towering highest to power in Koke's corner with a header at the near post. It was 2-0 in the 37th minute after an own-goal. Getafe's Alberto Lopo attempted to clear Arda Turan's cross from the right, but instead sliced the ball into his own net.
The situation became worse for Getafe five minutes later, when Juan Valera was sent off for his second bookable offence, a handball.
After taking a 2-0 lead into half-time, Atletico turned the match into a rout with two goals shortly after the interval. Villa finished Juanfran's cross in the 49th minute, and Garcia scored his second—another header—three minutes later.
Atleti kept piling on, with Costa (an overhead kick golazo in the 69th minute) and Villa (78') rounding out the scoring.
With the loss, Getafe fell to seventh place.
On target: 12-1
Malaga 1-2 Athletic Bilbao
Iker Muniain’s late heroics put the finishing touches on Athletic Bilbao’s come-from-behind win away to Malaga on Monday.
The victory takes the Basque side to within just a single point of fourth-place Villarreal while Malaga, in 14th position, are just a single point above the drop.
Still, things got off to a bright start for the hosts when striker Juanmi beat Athletic goalkeeper Gorka Iraizoz with a headed effort from Marcos Angeleri’s nodded pass in the 38th minute, and after Mikel San Jose missed his shot just five minutes later Malaga were able to take their advantage into the break.
But San Jose would still be heard from, and after misplacing another shot in the 53rd minute he finally found the back of the net in the 68th—his header from Markel Susaeta’s delivery evading the reach of Willy Caballero.
The stage was now set for late dramatics, and Muniain provided them in the 85th minute after slipping the ball past Caballero after being put through by Ander Herrera.
On target: 1-6