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Match round-up - First Division, Day 9

Two games on Monday evening, Real Sociedad and Espanyol starting things off with a 1-1 draw which left the Basque side still two points below the European spots, and their opponents three points behind them in the table. Leo Baptistao headed the visitors in to an early lead, but after the interval Illarramendi levelled it before he was eventually sent off for a second bookable offence in time added on.

Later in the evening Girona beat Deportivo 1-2 to move above their hosts and three points clear of the drop zone. The first two goals were from the penalty spot, Aday putting the Catalans in front after Kayode was fouled by Albentosa, and Lucas Pérez making it all square after he was brought down by Ramalho. However Portu got the winner with twenty minutes to go to leave local coach Pepe Mel facing an uncertain future after six games without a victory. (23.10.17)

Real Madrid hold on to third place, still five points behind leaders Barcelona, after a 3-0 victory over Eibar on Sunday evening. Paulo Oliveira headed a Marco Asensio cross in to his own net with twenty minutes gone, and ten minutes later Asensio himself got the second after connecting with a pass from Isco. And with seven minutes to go Marcelo combined with fellow substitute Benzema to score the third.

Real Madrid stay a point above neighbours Atlético, who won 0-1 at Celta earlier in the afternoon. Gameiro got the only goal in the first half following a Gabi corner to give Simeone’s team their first victory in five games. However it took a string of great saves by Oblak after that from Daniel Wass, Iago Aspas, Hugo Mallo and Guidetti to ensure the result in the end.

Leganés are now fifth after they beat Athletic Bilbao 1-0, Beauvue scoring the only goal shortly after the break after a mistake by San Jose. The midfielder himself had headed a corner against the bar before that, but otherwise keeper Cuéllar had few problems clocking up his fifth clean sheet in succession.

Villarreal are sixth after they thrashed struggling Las Palmas 4-0 in the Sunday mid-day kick-off. All the goals came in the second half, Bakambu opening the scoring after Samu Castillejo put him through. Bacca hit the bar before Mario added the second following a throw-in, and Ximo turned Mario’s cross in to his own net just two minutes later. And with the game coming to an end Sansone made it four to hand the Canary Islanders their seventh defeat in nine games. (22.10.17)

Barcelona maintain their four point lead at the top of the table after a 2-0 victory over bottom club Málaga in the last game on Saturday night. Deulofeu opened the scoring in only the second minute, although the goal should not have stood as the ball clearly went out of play before Digne laid it across to the ex Everton forward. There were few chances after that though, the best a Chory Castro header wide, and a shot from Messi which debutant keeper Andrés Prieto kept out. Some ten minutes in to the second half though Messi put Iniesta through for him to score his first goal in a year with a shot which deflected off Rosales, and Luis Suárez missed a couple of chances after that to extend the lead.

Valencia stay in second spot though after they beat Sevilla 4-0 earlier in the evening. Guedes gave the Ches the lead shortly before the break after running through from midfield to fire a shot past Sergio Rico, and Zaza made it two with an angled shot after Rodrigo put him through soon after the restart. Neto had to keep out Muriel and Sarabia a few minutes later, but with five minutes to go Santi Mina made it three from a Guedes assist, and Guedes himself rounded off a good performance with the fourth after picking up a long ball from Kondogbia to lift a shot past Rico.

Sevilla’s defeat allowed Betis to catch them in the table, Quique Setién’s side beating Alavés 2-0 to move above their city rivals of goal difference. Sarabia headed the first from Barragán’s cross in the twelfth minute, and Joaquín and Camarasa brought good saves out of Pacheco either side of the break. Munir had a good penalty appeal turned down though and was then pulled up incorrectly for offside, and Adán had to make a couple of important saves, but with a quarter of an hour to go Tello’s cross hit Alexis, and the ball bounced slowly past the wrong-footed visiting keeper to put the result beyond doubt.

Levante and Getafe cancelled each other out in a 1-1 draw on Saturday lunchtime which leaves both teams safely in mid-table. Morales and Jorge Molina went close and Portillo had a goal ruled out for a questionable offside decision in an otherwise quiet first half. With just under an hour on the clock though Cala fired a shot against the upright following a corner, and the ball came back out for Fayçal Fajr to drill a long shot past Raúl Fernández. Some four minutes later however Morales levelled it after a quick passing move, and the team captain felt he should have had a penalty when brought down in the area soon afterwards. (21.10.17)