Real Madrid kept pace with Barcelona once again, a 2-0 victory over Valladolid maintaining the six point gap with their arch-rivals. Raúl opened the scoring from Higuaín's cross near the end of the first half and Robben got the second after Guti set him up with six minutes to go to make it fourteen wins and a draw from their last fifteen games.
Madrid's lead over third placed Sevilla widened to twelve points after the Andalusians were beaten 0-1 by Getafe. The locals hit the woodwork three times, but they were unable to beat debutant keeper Stojkovic. And Gavilán struck the winner past Palop with ten minutes to go to take some pressure off coach Víctor Muñoz.
Valencia moved back up in to the top four after a 2-3 win at Sporting Gijón. David Silva's impressive opener was cancelled out by a Barral penalty shortly before the break. But David Villa converted a second penalty against his old side, and although Bilic made it all square again, Mata ran through to score the winner near the end.
Atlético Madrid bounced back from last week's defeat against Osasuna, beating Deportivo 1-2 to return to the top six. Agüero put them ahead after picking up a return pass from Diego Forlán on the stroke of half time, and Simao made it two before Bodipo headed one back from Guardado's free kick with three minutes left on the clock.
Down at the foot of the table, bottom two Numancia and Espanyol did themselves no favours in a match which ended 0-0. The visitors thought themselves hard done by though after referee Mejuto González waved away appeals for hand ball when Moreno blocked an effort from Tamudo on the line, and then disallowed a goal from Sergio Sánchez.
All the teams immediately above the drop zone won though, with Betis beating Racing Santander 2-3 to get new coach José María Nogués off to a best possible start. Luccin's early strike was soon overturned by goals from Edu and Emaná. Zigic equalised again before the break, but Toño got himself sent off soon after the restart and Emaná got the winner a few minutes later.
Osasuna made it four wins on the trot after they beat Athletic Bilbao 2-1, and they move above their regional neighbours in the table. Masoud started things off midway through the first half, and although Aitor Ocio headed the equaliser three minutes later, Sergio got the winner following a corner with ten minutes to go.
Mallorca have one of the hardest run-ins to the end of the season, and they added to their cushion of points with a 2-0 victory over Almería. Cléber Santana got the first with a spectacular over-head kick following a corner on the hour mark, and substitute Castro wrapped things up in the final minute. (12.04.09)
Barcelona moved nine points clear at the top pending Real Madrid's game on Sunday after beating Recreativo 2-0. Guardiola's side got off to the best possible start when Iniesta turned in Henry's cross with less than a minute on the clock, although the second goal didn't come until midway through the second half, when Morris turned Iniesta's cross past his own keeper.
Villarreal are gradually running out of steam though, and they could end the weekend outside the top four after losing 0-2 to Málaga later in the evening. Duda ran to Apoño's long ball to open the scoring shortly before the break, and Albert Luque set up Eliseu for the second near the end. The win takes the Andalusians up to sixth. (11.04.09)