First Division - Day 27

Athletic Bilbao 2 - Real Madrid 5

Athletic: Gorka Iraizoz; Iraola, Aitor Ocio, Amorebieta, Koikili (Balenziaga 46'); David López (Gurpegui 51'), Orbaiz (Susaeta 55'), Javi Martínez, Yeste; Toquero, Llorente. 4-4-2.
Madrid: Casillas; Sergio Ramos, Pepe, Metzelder, Heinze; Robben (Faubert 66'), Lass, Sneijder, Marcelo; Huntelaar (Dani Parejo 78'), Raúl (Higuaín 64'). 4-4-2.

Team changes: Athletic: Aitor Ocio, David López, Toquero for Gurpegui, Susaeta, Gabilondo / Madrid: Pepe, Metzelder, Sneijder for Cannavaro, Gago, Guti.

0-1. 21. Robben. Picked up long Sneijder pass and cut in from wing to score.
0-2. 34. Heinze. Got ahead of defence to head Sneijder's free kick in to net.
1-2. 36. Heinze (own goal). Turned David López cross in to own net trying to clear.
2-2. 45. Llorente. Header from David López free kick which Casillas couldn't stop.
2-3. 47. Huntelaar. Caught out Iraizoz with low shot from edge of area inside post.
2-4. 62. Huntelaar. Collected Robben's pass and lifted shot wide of Iraizoz.
2-5. 85. Higuaín (penalty). After Iraola brought down Marcelo inside area.

Yellow cards: Iraola 03', Koikili 05', Aitor Ocio 38', Javi Martínez 38', Huntelaar 40', Sneijder 45', Llorente 50', Amorebieta 57', Dani Parejo 80', Higuaín 82', Gurpegui 87' / red cards: Yeste 38'

Real Madrid moved to within three points of Barcelona pending their game on Sunday after beating Athletic Bilbao 2-5. With Bilbao playing their first home match since reaching the cup final, and Madrid looking to bounce back after their defeat in the Champions League, the atmosphere in the San Mamés stadium was electric. Casillas was in action early on to keep out a Yeste free kick, but Madrid struck first on a quick breakaway which Robben started and finished after Sneijder played a long ball through to his fellow countryman.

Referee Muñiz Fernández had already let Huntelaar off an early red card, and then turned down a penalty appeal by Toquero, and there was some confusion again when Heinze beat the offside trap to head Sneijder's free kick past Iraizoz. The goal was allowed to stand though, and just three minutes later Heinze scored in his own net trying to clear a David López cross, which must be something of a record.

Casillas was incensed though that Yeste had tried a shot at goal in the build up play with Sneijder lying injured, and as the keeper rushed up to remonstrate, the midfielder pushed him in the chest and knocked him over. Muñiz had no hesitation pulling out the red card for Yeste, leaving the locals with ten men.

The crowd then started to get at Casillas, and maybe for that reason the usually reliable keeper allowed Llorente's header to squeeze past him to level the scores on the stroke of half time. Just two minutes after the restart though it was his opposite number Iraizoz who had egg on his face as Huntelaar caught him out of position with a shot from the edge of the area.

Tempers were starting to get frayed, and Muñiz showed red cards to Ion Vélez and a member of the coaching staff whilst still on the bench. Soon afterwards though Huntelaar ran on to Robben's pass to score his second of the night, and there was no way back for the locals. Toquero did try his luck, but with dive minutes to go substitute Higuaín wrapped things up from the penalty spot after Iraola brought down Marcelo. The title challenge is back on, and the pressure is back on Barcelona.