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Xavi against Real Sociedad / PHOTO: ARCHIVE - FCB

Barça, Betis and Real Madrid all scored five, whilst Getafe and Atlético Madrid played out the only goalless game of a weekend that posed the following questions:

Can Real get back into the Champions League, just three years after coming up from the second division? Real Sociedad’s 4-2 win over Champions League quarter finalists Málaga, leaves the Basques four points ahead of Pellegrini’s side, with Valencia moving into fifth, two points behind, after beating Valladolid 2-1. Real look to have the easier run in, with Valencia at Anoeta at the end of the month – just a week after Malaga travel to Mestalla and hopes are highthat they can return to the competition they last played in in the 2003/04 campaign.

Can Deportivo pull off a miracle escape? With the 3-2 win over Zaragoza, Deportivo have won as many games over the last three weeks as they had managed all season before that and given that those three wins have come against the other three teams involved in the relegation dog fight – Celta, Mallorca and Zaragoza, there is real hope at the Riazor that they could avoid the drop.  Saturday was Zaragoza’s 12th week on the run without a win (they’ve yet to beat anybody in 2013) and they are now just one point ahead of Deportivo with Barça’s visit this weekend followed by massive games against Celta and Mallorca.

Can Espanyol challenge for Europe? Espanyol were 18th after their 4-0 beating at the Camp Nou in January, but since then they’ve lost just twice and Sunday’s 0-2 win over Osasuna in Pamplona leaves them 12th on 39 points – just eight points off the European spots. Safety was boss Javier Aguirre’s objective when he was brought in to replace Pochettino, but with that seemingly achieved – is a Europa League spot a possibility?

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