First division - day 12
A thrilling match at the Santiago Bernabeu, where leaders Real Madrid came from behind to beat Mallorca 4-3. Robinho twice gave Bernd Schuster's side the lead in the first quarter of an hour, but each time Varela levelled the scores for the visitors. And early in the second half Güiza celebrated his call up for the Spanish squad by putting the Islanders ahead. But Robinho appeared again to set up Raúl for the equaliser, and with a quarter of an hour to go Van Nistelrooy latched on to Raúl's pass to get the winner.
Villarreal took advantage of Barcelona's slip to move back up to second after beating Sevilla 3-2 later in the evening. This too was a game of turnarounds, with Guille Franco opening the scoring for the locals, but Kanouté and Luis Fabiano getting goals either side of half time to put the Andalusians in front. The visitors lost Daniel Alves to a second booking just before the break though, and a second Guille Franco goal and a Mati Fernández penalty in the second half were enough to keep Pellegrini's side just a point behind Madrid.
Espanyol are up to fifth, just two points behind Barcelona and Valencia, after a late 2-1 win over Athletic Bilbao. Gabilondo gave the Basque side the lead in only the second minute of the game after Aduríz headed across Amorebieta's free kick, but Tamudo turned in Riera's cross to equalise shortly before the interval, and Aitor Ocio deflected Clemente's cross over ex Espanyol keeper Gorka and in to his own net in the last minute.
Atlético Madrid drop down a place to sixth though after they were held to a 0-0 draw at Almería. They have Leo Franco and the goal-posts to thank for saving a point though, the keeper stopping a first half penalty and the two follow up shots, and the home side rattling the woodwork twice either side of half time. Antonio López could have won it for Atleti though when his free kick struck the bar near the end.
Racing Santander kept up their good start to the season, a 0-1 victory at Deportivo taking them to within a point of the European spots. Visiting keeper Toño was the star of the night, with a string of first class saves from Verdú, Xisco, Guardado and others, and the Cantabrians scored with virtually their first shot on target when Tchité turned a Munitis cross past Aouate midway through the second half.
Zaragoza lost ground on the teams above them after losing 2-1 at Betis. A D'Alessandro free kick ten minutes before the break seemed to have put them on track for victory. But two goals from substitute Pavone in the last ten minutes turned the scoreline around, and probably saved the head of coach Héctor Cúper as well.
Recreativo coach Víctor Muñoz also breathed a sigh of relief after his side beat Osasuna 1-0. The Andalusians had not scored a single goal in almost ten hours of football, but a long strike from Carlos Martins with twenty minutes to go was enough to give them the three points.
Recre are still not out of the drop zone though after Valladolid beat bottom club Levante 1-0. Jonathan Sesma struck a spectacular winner eighteen minutes in to the second half to give Mendilibar's side their first home win of the season. Only one point divides seven teams fighting to avoid the last relegation spot. (11.11.07)
Barcelona kicked off week twelve knowing that a win at Getafe would take them above Real Madrid pending their game on Sunday. However they lost 2-0 to the side who knocked them out of the cup six months ago, continuing their poor form away from home. Manu Del Moral opened the scoring for the Madrid based side midway through the first half, turning the ball past Valdés after Cata Díaz headed over Licht's free kick, and after Zambrotta was sent off for a hard tackle on the left back, Albín wrapped things up with a second goal in the last minute.
Valencia moved level on points with Barcelona and also Villarreal after beating Murcia 3-0 later in the evening. The Chés put an end to a run of four defeats in a row in the Mestalla stadium, with Iván Helguera setting them on their way when he headed home David Silva's free kick in the eleventh minute. David Villa added two more either side of half time, the first after Albelda put him through and the second after Silva played Albelda's pass back into his path, to give new coach Ronald Koeman his first win. (10.11.07)