News Archive

First division – day 16

The weekend ended like it began, with a 0-0 draw. This time it was between neighbours Alavés and Athletic Bilbao, the hosts ending the day in sixth spot, and the visitors staying down in the relegation zone, just below Villarreal on goal difference. It was a typical Basque derby, with chances few and far between, and neither keeper was particularly troubled. (17.12.18)

Barcelona remain three points clear at the top of the table after they thrashed Levante 0-5 on Sunday evening. Last season the Valencia based side were the only ones to beat the Catalans in the league, and Boateng hit the bar in the early minutes. However Messi set up Luis Suárez for the opener with ten minutes to go to the break, and then added two himself either side of half time. With an hour gone Messi completed his hat-trick, and he rounded off yet another excellent performance setting up Piqué for the fifth. Earlier in the day Sevilla had drawn level with Barça and Atlético after beating Girona 2-0 in the mid-day kick-off. Both goals came early on in the second half, Banega converting a penalty after Juanpe brought down André Silva in the area, and Sarabia combining with Ben Yedder to make it two. Sevilla’s city neighbours Betis are now fifth after they came from behind to beat Espanyol 1-3. Sergio García put the locals in front, but Lo Celso equalised before the break, and a Tello free kick and an Oscar Duarte own goal in last five minutes or so handed the Catalans their fifth defeat in a row. Further down the table Huesca and Villarreal drew 2-2, a result which left the hosts still at the bottom of the rankings, and their opponents just a point above the drop zone. Cucho Hernández and Bacca converted penalties either side of the interval, and Asenjo saved a third penalty from Melero midway through the second half after Mario was sent off for a foul on the midfielder. Even so Gerard Moreno put the ten men ahead, but with the game in injury time Longo made it all square once again. (16.12.18)

Atlético Madrid moved up level with leaders Barcelona after a 2-3 win at Valladolid on Saturday afternoon. Simeone’s side appeared to have things under control when they went two up at the break, Griezmann setting up Kalinic for the opener and then scoring the second himself from the penalty spot. However a Calero header and a Saúl own goal made it all square after the restart, and it was not until ten minutes from the end that Griezmann got the winner after a corner fell to him in the area. Real Madrid are now third, just two points behind their city rivals, after they beat next to bottom club Rayo Vallecano 1-0 later in the evening. Benzema put the locals ahead early on, and Kroos hit the post after the restart, but in the dying minutes it took two good saves by Courtois from Alex Alegría and Velázquez to ensure the three points. Madrid now go on to the UAE to take part in the Club World Cup. Things are still tight below the top four though, Getafe the latest incumbents of fifth spot after a 1-0 victory over Real Sociedad in the early kick-off. Jorge Molina got the only goal in the third minute, but Djene could have increased the lead when he hit the bar later on in the first half. Valencia though are still struggling, and they clocked up their tenth draw of the season after they were held 1-1 at Eibar. Rodrigo put the Ches in front midway through the first half, but Charles saved a point for the locals from the penalty spot after Gayà handled in the area soon after the restart. (15.12.18)

No goals in the Friday night game this week, Celta and Leganés drawing 0-0 to leave the Galicians in eighth spot and the Madrid based side four points above the drop zone pending the rest of the weekend games. En-Nesyri missed a couple of good chances for the visitors after the break, but otherwise the locals were on top, Cuéllar making some important saves and Maxi Gómez heading against the bar in the second half. (14.12.18)