La Liga Results: Analysis for Villarreal vs. Rreal Madrid and Other Matches

Michael Cummings@MikeCummings37World Football Lead WriterSeptember 15, 2013

La Liga Results: Analysis for Villarreal vs. Rreal Madrid and Other Matches

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    And then there were two.

    Four teams entered the La Liga weekend with 100 percent records on the young season. Two kept up the pace, and one needed every second to do so.

    Barcelona and Atletico Madrid kept winning, while Real Madrid and Villarreal shared the points in a marquee matchup of unbeaten teams. In this slideshow, B/R updates you on all the weekend action.

    Read on for all the results.

    Click here for the league table.

    Stats via WhoScored.com.

Barcelona 3-2 Sevilla

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    Alexis Sanchez scored in the fourth minute of stoppage time to seal a dramatic win for Barcelona, who blew a 2-0 lead in a wild final 10 minutes.

    Barcelona had led 2-0 with 15 minutes left to play through goals by Dani Alves (36') and Lionel Messi (75'). Ivan Rakitic pulled one back for Sevilla in the 80th minute and Coke drew level with a volley in the 90th.

    With time winding down, Messi burst through Sevilla's box and pulled back a pass toward the middle, only for goalkeeper Beto to parry—straight into the path of Alexis, who poked in the winner.

    Rakitic also had a flicked headed goal disallowed despite replays showing no infraction on the play. The visitors recorded just two shots on target.

    The win kept Barcelona atop the table with 12 points from 12 possible. Sevilla still have yet to win in the league this season.

    Shots: 19-7

    On target: 10-2

    Passing: 89%-76%

    Possession: 66%-34%

Villarreal 2-2 Real Madrid

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    Gareth Bale scored on his Real Madrid debut, but Los Blancos were unable to hold a late lead in drawing 2-2 at surprise team Villarreal.

    The draw meant both teams lost their 100 percent records. Villarreal, promoted from the Segunda Division ahead of the season, are third with 10 points, while Madrid are fourth, also with 10 points but an inferior goal differential.

    Bale, signed for a world-record fee, made his first start for Madrid and drew the visitors level in the 39th minute, turning in Dani Carvajal's low cross following good work from Luka Modric. The Welshman departed in the 62nd minute, and Cristiano Ronaldo put Madrid ahead moments later as the ball ricocheted off Mateo Musacchio and Ronaldo himself before going in.

    Villarreal had taken the lead in the 21st minute through Cani, and Giovani dos Santos leveled in the 70th minute for a deserved point.

    Shots: 19-20

    On target: 9-6

    Passing: 77%-85%

    Possession: 42%-58%

Atletico Madrid 4-2 Almeria

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    Atletico Madrid maintained their 100 percent start to the season with a 4-2 home win against promoted side Almeria. David Villa, Diego Costa (penalty), Tiago and Raul Garcia scored the goals as Atleti kept pace with Barcelona atop the table.

    Villa opened the scoring in the 15th minute, volleying after Almeria defender Angel Trujillo failed to clear with a header. Costa then came close to scoring a spectacular solo goal, but he was unable to beat Esteban Suarez after weaving through Almeria's defense. 

    Costa doubled Atleti's advantage from the spot in the 37th, sending Suarez the wrong way with his spot-kick. Almeria pulled one back five minutes before the half as Rodri finished high after winning possession inside the box.

    Tiago restored the hosts' two-goal advantage in the 64th minute, finishing an intricate free kick, before Raul Garcia finished off Almeria with a neat finish from Juanfran's cutback.

    Almeria remain winless on the season.

    Shots: 20-7

    On target: 8-2

    Passing: 84%-82%

    Possession: 50%-50%

Athletic Bilbao 3-2 Celta Vigo

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    Athletic Bilbao opened their glittering new stadium in style, Monday, beating Celta Vigo 3-2 in a thrilling encounter at San Mames Barria.

    A wild opening 20 minutes of the match saw Celta Vigo’s Charles and Athletic’s Mikel San Jose exchange goals before the remainder of the goalscoring was put off until the second half.

    Twice in seven minutes after the hour-mark the hosts extended their lead—first going a goal in front thanks to Andoni Iraola’s right-footer in close following some good buildup play from Iker Muniain and then adding a measure of insurance through Benat, who roofed his effort from near the penalty marker after receiving an inch-perfect through ball from San Jose.

    Celta Vigo managed a fight-back late on, pulling within a goal thanks to Santi Mina’s header, but the hosts were able to hang on and pull within three points of the top of the table.

    Shots: 16-8

    On target: 6-3

    Passing: 81%-76%

    Possession: 56%-44%

Other Games

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    Levante 0-0 Real Sociedad

    Levante played a second goalless draw of the season, this one against Real Sociedad on Saturday.

    Sociedad's Carlos Vela hit the crossbar from six yards in the second half, and Levante's Papakouli Diop hit the woodwork with a free kick in the closing minutes.

    Granada 0-1 Espanyol

    Manu Lanzarote scored the only goal in the 76th minute as Espanyol picked up a controversial win on Sunday.

    The goal came from an indirect free kick in Granada's box after the referee incorrectly whistled the home side for an illegal back pass. Granada's Odion Ighalo was then sent off in the 82nd minute after receiving two quick bookings for dissent.

    Still unbeaten on the season, Espanyol moved up to fifth with the win.

    Getafe 2-1 Osasuna

    Miku's brace lifted Getafe past Osasuna on Sunday.

    Roberto Torres put the visitors ahead in the 11th minute with a right-footed shot from Emiliano Armenteros' cross.

    Miku equalized with a close-range header in the 35th minute and bagged the winner in the 52nd.

    Malaga 5-0 Rayo Vallecano 

    Mounir El Hamdaoui hit a hat-trick and assisted another goal as Malaga recorded their first win of the season in emphatic style on Sunday.

    Netherlands international El Hamdaoui scored the opener from close range in the 31st minute, then assisted Malaga's second, which was scored by Francisco Portillo five minutes before halftime.

    Eliseu made it 3-0 two minutes after the restart with a shot into the top corner. El Hamdaoui scored his second, again from close range, in the 62nd minute. He completed his hat-trick with a shot from a tight angle five minutes later.

    Real Betis 3-1 Valencia

    Previously winless Real Betis consigned Valencia to a third-straight defeat with three goals in the first half Sunday. 

    Jorge Molina put Betis ahead in the ninth minute with a right-footed shot from outside the box, assisted by Salva Sevilla. Then Sevilla turned scorer for Betis' next two, in the 22nd and 34th minutes.

    Ricardo Costa pulled one back for Valencia, heading in Ever Banega's set piece in the 67th minute.

    Valencia started the season with a home win over Malaga but have lost to Betis, Barcelona and Espanyol since—giving up at least three goals in each defeat.

    Elche 0-0 Real Valladolid

    Neither Elche nor Real Valladolid will be all that disappointed with Monday’s draw, although Elche could be forgiven for thinking they might have won the match in the first half.

    Ferran Corominas tested Valladolid goalkeeper Diego Marino in the early minutes of the contest, and Morenjo Javi Marquez had perhaps the best chance of the night when his hard shot from distance rose slightly over the crossbar.

    Both sides lost a man to injury in the second half—Valladolid’s Marc Valiente making his exit just shy of the hour mark and Elche’s Marquez following him down the tunnel in the 80th minute.