Second division day 35
Atlético Madrid suffered a serious setback in their fight to get back to the top flight after losing surprisingly at home to Murcia on Saturday evening. Kiko, Salva and company were ineffective in attack and they were surprised by a Zárate header halfway through the first half after keeper Sergio hesitated. Further defensive mistakes let in Loreto and then Luis Gil after the break for the final 0-3 scoreline.
Atlético are now seven points adrift of Betis, who moved up to second place for the time being after a comfortable 4-1 victory over bottom club Lleida. Amato opened the scoring for Betis from the penalty spot and Casas added a second from Denilson's pass before Moreno pulled one back just before half time. However the Argentininan strikers each scored again in the second half to complete the rout and move to within a point of leaders Sevilla.
Salamanca kept their very slim hopes of promotion alive with a 0-1 victory away at Badajoz. Toedtli got the only goal in the second half. They now have 51 points, four behind Atlético. In the other match on Saturday night, Compostela and Leganés drew 1-1. Puñal scored for the visitors in the first half, but Ohen equalised ten minutes from time to save a valuable point and keep the Gallicians out of the relegation zone. (28.04.01)
Only two points separate the top three clubs after Sunday's games. Leaders Sevilla scraped an undeserved draw against Racing Ferrol with an injury time goal from Michel. The match started in a torrential downpour, and Racing took an early lead through Pavlicic. At the start of the second half Sevilla's keeper Notario was sent off after giving away a penalty, but with Olsen taking over, Pazolo put his kick over the bar. They stay a point ahead of Tenerife who won 0-2 away at Elche thanks to two goals from Mista in the first 20 minutes of the second half.
Recreativo Huelva lost ground on the leaders after being held at home to a 1-1 draw by Sporting Gijon. Referee Moreno Delgado allowed a first half goal by Soto to stand even though he punched the ball into the net with his hand, and he also turned down two valid appeals for penalties by the home side late in the match (although he did send off Sporting keeper Valencia in another incident). Recreativo did manage to equalise through half time substitute Bodipo to salvage a point and stay in fourth place, four points behind third placed Betis and two ahead of Atlético. Albacete's promotion hopes also took a dive as they lost 3-0 to Jaén and ended the match with ten men. Pepelu scored from a free kick in the first minute and Sierra and Jurado added two more in the second half.
Universidad Las Palmas scraped a last minute victory over Extremadura to keep alive the possibility of staying up. Things looked grim for the Canary Island side when they were reduced to ten men just before the interval after Yeray was sent off for a second bookable offence, but Alexis got the goal in the ninetieth minute with a shot which bounced awkwardly to beat Gaspercic. They are now four points behind Elche and Getafe, who drew 3-3 in a high scoring match at Levante. Salillas scored two and made another for Kaiku for the home side, with Trigo, Dika and Maikel replying for the Madrid based side. In the other match on Sunday evening, Córdoba beat Eibar 2-0 with late goals from Marcos and Montenegro. (29.04.01)