First division - day 12

Leaders Deportivo were surprisingly beaten 3-1 by relegation candidates Tenerife on Sunday night, although they still headed the table by one point at the end of the weekend. Bruno Marioni was the man who did the damage, scoring the opening goal in the first half and restoring the lead after the break with a fabulous individualist goal after Víctor had levelled the scores. Hugo Morales got the third to take the pressure off manager Pepe Mel, who would probably have lost his job if his team had lost.

With many international fixtures on this week, several of the top teams were missing key players. A depleted Valencia still managed to keep their unbeaten record in all competitions with their sixth away draw in a row. They shared the points with Osasuna in a dull game without goals, in which the only interesting moments were provided by referee Daudén Ibáñez. He awarded a penalty in the first half to the visitors and then changed his mind after talking to both linesmen, and then disallowed a goal by Carew in the closing minutes. Valencia drop to third, behind Barcelona on goal average.

Barcelona restored some pride after losing to Real Madrid and getting knocked out of the cup, beating Valladolid by a flattering 4-0. Two goals in a minute by Saviola and Puyol halfway through the first half gave them a comfortable lead, and they got two more after the break, the first a Kluivert penalty after Saviola was pushed over by Jesús and the other a late strike by Saviola. It was not all one way traffic though, with Bonano making some good saves and Tote hitting the post from the penalty spot in injury time. Alavés go back up to the table to fourth after a late 2-1 victory over Espanyol on a snow covered ground in Vitoria. The visitors took the lead from the penalty spot after Tamudo was brought down by Coloccini, Tamudo taking the kick himself. But

Alavés drew level through Llorens, also from the penalty spot, after Espanyol keeper Argensó got himself sent off, and the visitors were reduced to nine men near the end when Morales also got his marching orders. Magno scored the winner in injury time, leaving Espanyol's manager Paco Flores fighting to keep his position. Flores was very critical of referee Turienzo Alvarez after the match.

Celta appeared to be cruising against Athletic Bilbao when they went two goals ahead with ten minutes left, Jesuli adding to an earlier headed goal by Cáceres. However Bilbao scored three in six minutes to steal the three points away with a 2-3 victory. Substitute Karanka led the comeback with his first league goal, and after Celta's Velasco was sent off, Etxeberria made it all square and then Orbaiz got the winner from a free kick. Bilbao move above Celta to fifth place.

Real Madrid's comeback was cut short by Zaragoza, who beat them 2-1 with a late Toro Acuña goal. Acuña had only just stepped off a plane after returning from Paraguay, and went back immediately after the match to play for his country again midweek. Yordi gave the home side the lead in the first half, but Raúl cancelled it out with a second half strike before Acuña's 30 yard winner gave Zaragoza their second win in a row.

Villarreal finally ended their run of six games without a win, beating Las Palmas 2-0. Arruabarrena opened the scoring in the first half after a corner, and Jorge López got the second after the break after Palermo put him through. Villarreal move up to ninth, only a point away from sixth placed Celta.

Bottom club Rayo Vallecano recorded their third home win in a row, beating Málaga by 3-0. Arteaga scored the first, assisted by Málaga's keeper Contreras, and Peragón got the second from the penalty spot after he was brought down by Roteta. Rayo's new signing from Real Madrid Baljic came on in the second half, but it was his fellow countryman Bolic who got the third near the end. They stay bottom, but close up on the teams above them, including Málaga who are now only a place above the relegation spots.

Real Sociedad dropped back in to the bottom three after losing to relegation rivals Mallorca by 1-2, ending their urno f three victories in a row. The goals for Sergio Kresic's side came from Campano and Riera in the second half, with De Paula levelling the scores temporarily in between. Mallorca climb above their opponents to sixteenth. (11.11.01)

A big build up for the derby match between high flying Sevilla and Betis, but in the end the two sides cancelled each other out in a 0-0 draw. It was a typical hard fought game, with niggling fouls and tempers raised throughout. The only opportunities came in the first half, with Notario saving a Luis Fernández free kick and Capi shooting wide for the visitors, and Luis Gil bringing a good save out of Prats at the other end. Both teams stay in the higher positions of the table pending Sunday's games. (10.11.01)

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