La Liga Table 2013 Week 12: Updated Standings Following Matchday 11
Barcelona guaranteed itself at least another week atop the La Liga table by picking up three points with a 3-0 win over Celta Vigo in Estadio Balaidos on Tuesday. The win comes just days after Barca sent off rival Real Madrid with a 2-1 defeat.
With 10 wins and just one draw in their 11 matches, the Catalan Giants have 31 points. Still, Atletico Madrid entered this week just one point behind Barca, and Atletico Madrid has a winnable match with Granada set for Thursday.
The race for the top of the table remains tight.
Have a look at the table, and then I'll start recapping the week's La Liga action. Also, feel free to view the full results and schedule here.
Espanyol 0-0 Malaga
The scoreless draw in this battle at Cornella does not paint an accurate picture of the action on the pitch.
This match got off to a sluggish start, but by the time halftime hit, both sides had solid chances, and that continued into the second half.
Malaga had the better looks on the day, but this wasn't a lopsided affair by any stretch of the imagination. Meanwhile, goalkeepers Willy Caballero and Kiko Casilla both enjoyed fantastic days and kept both sides off the scoreboard.
In the end, the scoreless draw was no shock. The two sides have accounted for just 20 combined goals all season.
With the draw, Espanyol improves to 15 points on the season while Malaga now has 10.
Celta Vigo 0-3 Barcelona
Alexis Sanchez put Barcelona on the board just nine minutes into this contest, and Barca never looked back.
That 1-0 advantage held until halftime and increased early in the second on an own goal by Yoel Rodríguez Oterino. Cesc Fabregas tacked on the final score of the match in the 54th minute.
Celta Vigo did fire 12 shots, with four being on goal in this match. But with Barcelona controlling 60 percent of possession and the sure hands of Victor Valdes in goal, the outcome of this match never felt in doubt.
Barcelona continues to leave the rest of La Liga with no margin for error.
Real Valladolid 2-2 Real Sociedad
Claudio Bravo blocked a penalty by Patrick Ebert in injury time to deny Real Valladolid three points. However, the visitors can't be to dismayed by the result.
With 75 minutes gone in this match, on the strength of a brace by Antoine Griezmann, Sociedad had a 2-0 lead.
Daniel Larsson added a goal in the 76th minute and three minutes later Javi Guerra equalized the contest. It was a fierce comeback to earn the draw.
Valencia 1-2 Almeria
No. That score is not backwards. Almeria actually picked up a win.
The first half of this contest played out as most expected with Valencia taking a 1-0 lead into halftime over the winless side. A Jonas penalty was the first half's only score.
However, Almeria flashed a bit of pride in the second with a goal by Marco Torsigilieri in the 61st minute and another by Alexis Vidal Parreu in the 69th minute to send the home side to its first victory of the year.
Osasuna 3-1 Rayo Vallecano
Osasuna dominated this match from the very start. It took Oier Sonj just one minute to put his side on the board. Just 12 minutes later, Oriol Riera Magem put Osasuna up 2-0.
That score remained until Roberto Torres added a third Osasuna goal in the 58th minute.
Rayo Vallecano finaly cracked the board with a Alejandro Galvez goal in the 71st minute. But it was far too late for his side to make any real waves at that point.
Real Madrid 7-3 Sevilla FC
Gareth Bale began justifying his massive salary by picking up a brace in this match by the 27th minute. That was all of his scoring on the day, but it helped give his side a 2-0 lead.
While Bale was done scoring, his team was not. Karim Benzema added a brace and Cristiano Ronaldo a hat trick in this lopsided affair.
Still, while Real Madrid dominated this match, Sevilla faced just a 3-2 deficit at halftime. Things quickly eroded for the home side in the second, however.
Getafe 2, Villarreal 0
Getafe continued their strong start to the season with a 2-0 win over Villarreal in El Madrigal. It's the first home loss of the season for the Yellow Submarine.
Getafe got a critical sucker punch in the fifth minute, when Cirpian Marica put the guests up 1-0. Getting an early goal is a huge boost for any road team. Things only got easier when Pablo Iniguez was sent off in the 39th minute.
That left Villarreal with an almost impossible task of snatching anything from the match. Getafe bunkered in to protect their lead and even managed to get an insurance goal in the 90th minute.
Atletico Madrid 2, Granada 1
Atletico Madrid took advantage of their spot kicks to earn a 2-1 win over Granada.
Both of Atletico's goals came from the penalty spot. Diego Costa slotted home a penalty in the 38th minute following a foul by Diego Mainz, and David Villa made it 2-0 in the 78th minute after Jeison Murillo picked up a yellow card resulting from a foul in the box.
It was your typical Atletico performance. They ceded possession in order to hit quickly on the counter and used their physicality to bully Granada's attackers. Joao Miranda and Diego Godin in particular played very well.
Granada got a consolation goal in the 90th minute, courtesy of Odion Ighalo.
Athletic Bilbao 2, Elche 2
Athletic Bilbao dropped what could be two critical points in a 2-2 draw against Elche.
However, the hosts did a great job of clawing back from a 2-0 deficit after the 47th minute.
Lomban put Elche up 1-0, finishing off a corner kick in the ninth minute. Then Aaron doubled the lead in the 47th minute.
Markel Susaeta halved the difference with a goal seven minutes later, and Aritz Aduriz found the equalizer in the 69th minute.
The draw will be especially frustrating for Athletic as they could've moved into the top four following Villarreal's loss.
Real Betis 0, Levante 0
Real Betis and Levante played to a 0-0 draw in the Estadio Benito Villamarin on Thursday night.
The Granotes have built a reputation as a physical, defensive side, and they lived up to that reputation, picking up six yellow cards and committing 14 fouls.
Levante got a huge boost in the 30th minute, when Javi Chica got his second yellow in a span of 17 minutes.
Surprisingly, though, it was Betis who nearly found the first goal and had the best scoring chance of the match. In the 75th minute, Jorge Molina had his penalty saved by Keylor Navas.
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