First division - day 3
Miguel Angel Lotina's Celta top the table with three wins out of three after beating Recreativo 0-3 in Huelva. The newly promoted side were no match for the visitors, with team captain Mostovoi leading the team by example. The Russian midfielder scored the first two goals, beating keeper César on the stroke of half time with a shot from over 30 metres and then adding a second after the break shortly after an excellent Cavallero had saved an Oscar Arpón penalty. Substitute McCarthy made it three in injury time to sink the Andalucians to the bottom of the table, one of three teams without a point. Their fans didn't seem to mind however, and they went on singing right to the end.
Last week's leaders Valencia saved a point at Málaga thanks to a goal by Angulo in the sixth minute of injury time. Joaquín Peiró's side went two goals ahead with only half an hour on the clock, with Manu taking advantage of his first start of the season to beat Cañizares for the first goal, and Roteta connecting with a long free kick to add the second. Rafa Benítez brought on Mista at the break and within three minutes he pulled one back with a long shot over Contreras. And then with the crowd calling for the full time whistle substitute Angulo levelled the scores to keep his side in second place. Referee Carmona Méndez had to be escorted off the pitch at the end.
An exciting match between Real Sociedad and Betis, which lived up to it's billing with a 3-3 scoreline between two of the league's most on-form teams. The visitors raced into a two goal lead, with Capi first lifting his shot over Westerveld to open the scoring and then finishing off a rapid counterattack after Joaquín played a first time ball in from Assunçao's long pass. Four minutes later though Rivas headed past his own keeper under pressure from Kovacevic, and the Yugoslav striker made it all square after the interval from a López Rekarte cross. Betis bounced back and Alfonso volleyed Capi's centre under the unsighted Westerveld, but Kovacevic once again beat Prats soon afterwards to earn his side a point.
Atlético Madrid recorded their first win since their return to the top flight, and they did it in style with a 0-4 victory against a poor Mallorca. Fernando Torres got the first from the penalty spot early on after Contra was fouled, and Correa made it two just before the half time break. It was more of the same in the second half, and goals from Fernando Torres and substitute Jorge completed the rout. The game could have had more goals though if it was not for good performances by both keepers Leo Franco and Esteban. Mallorca are bottom without a win, and manager Gregorio Manzano is already under pressure.
Alavés followed up their win in Europe midweek with another away victory at the weekend, 0-1 at Villarreal. Both sides announced changes to their line ups, with Ilie making his first start for Mané's side and the home team's new manager Benito Flores making several alterations to his starting formation. The only goal came ten minutes before the break when Iván Alonso caught the defence napping to run Astudillo's cross into the net. Alavés young keeper Juan Pablo came into the side for the first time in place of Dutruel, and he made a vital save from Palermo near the end.
Rayo Vallecano recorded their first win of the new season, 3-1 against Racing Santander, thanks to a hat-trick from on-loan Real Madrid youngster Julio Alvarez. Two of those goals came from the penalty spot though in a game in which referee Medina Cantalejo awarded three controversial spot kicks, the first of which came when Rayo's Peragón was brought down. Lemmens saved the first kick from Alvarez, but the referee made him take it again, sending off the Belgian keeper for protesting after the goal. The second penalty went to Racing near half time, and although Etxeberria pushed Ismael's shot onto the bar, Munitis scored on the follow up. Alvarez got his second penalty soon after the restart, and completed his hat-trick in injury time.
Sevilla and Athletic Bilbao played out a 1-1 draw which at least served to give both sides a point. Home side manager Joaquín Caparrós left his young star Reyes out of the starting line up as a punishment for statements made to the press, but called him up for the second half to strengthen his attack. Within five minutes he had scored, running on to a long pass from Marcos Vales to drive an angled shot in off the post. Marcos Vales got himself sent off though for a bad tackle, and Athletic came back when substitutes Tiko and Etxeberria combined, the former playing in a square free kick for the latter to shoot low past Notario. (22.09.02)
Barcelona moved provisionally to the top of the table pending Sunday's results after beating city rivals Espanyol 2-0. It has been 20 years since the Budgies have won at the Nou Camp, and they were under pressure early on, Argensó making first class saves from Saviola and Kluivert to keep the scores level at the break. The visitors' best chance came from a free kick from ex Barcelona midfielder Iván De la Peña, making his debut for his new side. Van Gaal brought on Riquelme at the break, but it was Luis Enrique who made the difference, first of all finding Kluivert with a long cross for the Dutch striker to head his first of the season, and then scoring his 99th career goal for Barça from Navarro's centre.
Real Madrid cruised to an easy 4-1 win over Osasuna to keep in touch with the leaders. Del Bosque's side were missing French internationals Makelele and Zidane through injury, but it made little difference as Iván Helguera put them in front with a deft backheel from Cambiasso's through ball in the tenth minute. Shortly after the half time interval Guti got the second after a defensive mistake, and Raúl stole a third from Figo's pass. The visitors got one back from the penalty spot after Casillas was ruled to have brought down Iván Rosado, Rivero converting the kick. However Helguera got his second of the night at the end from Figo's free kick to round off a comfortable victory.
Roy Makaay is the man on form though, and he rounded off an amazing week scoring two more goals as Deportivo beat one of the early leaders Valladolid by a 2-0 scoreline. The Dutch striker followed up his midweek hat-trick at Bayern Munich by opening the scoring with a quarter of an hour gone, taking Valerón's squared cross and rounding a defender before slotting the ball past the hitherto unbeaten Bizzarri. Fifteen minutes later he was there again to finish off when Valerón's glorious chip hit the base of the post, and he went close to completing another hat-trick in the second half when he shot wide after Sergio set him up. (21.09.02)