The Spanish League takes a two week break with Barça and Atlético Madrid tied on points at the top and Espanyol tethered to the bottom
Atlético draw level with Barça
Atlético Madrid drew level with Barça on 19 points after two goals from Falcao gave them a 2-1 win over Málaga in front of a packed house at the Vicente Calderón. The Colombian hitman, who now has eight goals for the season, the same as Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo, opened the scoring on 5 minutes, but Roque Santa Cruz equalised before the break for Málaga, who threatened themselves before Falcao managed to put the ball in the visitors net in the dying seconds.
Betis up into Champions League places
Málaga stay third, five points adrift of the top two, with Betis a further two points behind in fourth following Saturday’s 2-0 win against Real Sociedad, whilst Real Madrid are fifth on 11 points. Mallorca’s good start to the campaign has gone off the rails over the last two weeks with Sunday’s 1-2 defeat their second on the run, leaving them sixth, also on 11 points. The win was Granada’s first on the road this season and following last weekend’s win over Celta takes them up to 8 points, level with a disappointing Valencia, who went down 1-0 to Levante in the City derby.
Arduriz settles Basque derby
In the weekend’s other big derby game, Athletic Bilbao got a much needed three points, beating Osasuna 1-0 at the San Mames. Aduriz scored his fourth goal of the season to give Bielsa’s team the win, which could have been by a much bigger margin if not for a great performance from Osasuna keeper Andres Fernández. The win takes Bilbao up to eight points and leaves Osasuna second from bottom with only four. The Pamplona side are still two points ahead of Espanyol, who took a point at Valladolid with a 1-1 draw in a game the hosts’ boss Djulic called “our worst performance of the season” and his opposite number Mauricio Pochettino hopes: “will be a turning point for us”. Espanyol played the second half with ten men after Victor Alvarez was shown a red card, but thought they’d got their first win when Joan Verdu scored from the penalty spot on the hour mark, only for Oscar to equalise late on.
Deportivo slip into bottom three
Deportivo, who host Barça in a fortnight, and Zaragoza both slipped deeper into the relegation battle when they lost 2-1 at Rayo and 0-1 to Getafe respectively. The Galicians are now third from bottom on six points, with Zaragoza only ahead of them on goal difference.