Real Madrid thrashed Alaves with a 6-0 victory to stay clear at the top of the table and well in distance of winning the league title this year. Levante, Real Betis and Valencia register victories each while Sevilla edged past Athletic Bilbao to sum up a pretty eventful weekend of football in Spain.
Mallorca 0 - 3 Levante
Mallorca never quite looked like they had a grasp of the game, and their dismal form off-late just summed up their forgettable Sunday afternoon. Levante, on the other hand, had nothing to boast about either but they were the better team nevertheless. The first half saw equal dominance from both the teams with Levante taking 5 shots at goal compared to Mallorca’s 4, and neither managed to find the back of the net, keeping the scores unchanged at the break.
While the second period was also shaping up in a similar manner, Mallorca conceded an own goal in the 58th minute and that changed the complexion of the game. Levante scored their second goal 8 minutes later and it was all over by then. Even though the hosts did not let the match slip completely after that, a penalty conceded in the 83rd was too much for them to bear and were handed a 0-3 defeat at home. Overall, Levante kept 3 of their 12 shots on target while Mallorca managed to struck just 1 on target out of their total 10.
Real Sociedad 1 - 1 Granada
Two teams fighting for a continental spot - the match certainly lived up to the hype. It started with great tempo and Granada drew first blood 15 minutes into the first half. The remainder of the first 45 saw both the teams trying to outfox the other in search of goals, the end to end action kept the viewers hooked on to the match. Granada did manage to keep the lead and walk into the dugout with the upper hand during the halfway mark.
12 minutes into the second half, the hosts pulled back and restored parity, setting up an exciting last 30-minutes of play. Both the teams pounded on opportunities and raided each other's defense, but goals were hard to come by. It was indeed a fair result at the end, with both sides taking back a point each. Real Sociedad stitched up 53 dangerous attacks compared to Granada’s 56, while the hosts spent 16 seconds on an average per attack against the visitors’ 14.
Real Betis 2 - 0 Osasuna
Real Betis emerged as the deserved winners of the game, but they only found the target after draining themselves for the most part of the game. It was expected that Real Betis would dominate the game from the beginning and they did. But only to see 5 of their shots either saved by the custodian or sail away from the target. The first half ended 0-0, which saw Osasuna come up with a couple of shots that were harmless.
The scene was no different in the second period as Betis continued to dictate terms but they were never in a position to score. Finally, their moment of glory arrived in the 82nd minute, when they finally capitalized on their opportunity to take the lead. The away side had little time to recover, but then again the 89th-minute strike from the hosts sealed the deal for them. Real Betis took 14 shots at the goal and kept half of them on target, while Osasuna struck 8, with two aimed on target. The winners accounted for 56 dangerous attacks, 13 more than the visitors.
Athletic Bilbao 1 - 2 Sevilla
Sevilla kept the pressure on the top two following their 2-1 win over Bilbao in the weekend kick-off. To everyone’s surprise, it was Bilbao who hit the correct notes in the opening half, having taken the lead early in the 4th minute of the game. It took another 17 minutes for Sevilla to level the scores once again, after which Sevilla dominated till the first half whistle was blown.
The away side got into their groove in the second period and played with some authority. The number 3 side in the league finally got their insurance in the 77th minute and doubled their lead. It was game over for Bilbao as they never managed to stage a comeback even though they took a few shots towards the closing stages of the game. While both the sides created 51 dangerous attacks each, Sevilla took 11 shots at the goal, one less than the hosts.
Valencia 2 - 0 Real Valladolid
What started as a battle of evens, eventually turned out as a comfortable win for Valencia at the end, thus keeping them in the top half of the table. Apart from the goal scored by the hosts in the 19th minute, the first half had nothing to boast about, with the teams taking two shots each at the goal, excluding the strike. The lacklustre first-half did not promise much in the future.
It’s surprising how Real Valladolid dominated the entire second half and even had far more shots on goal, 6 in total, but never managed to register the all-important equalizer. Instead, Valencia, who were happy defending their 1 goal lead for most of the second half, scored another in the stoppage time to bag all three points from the fixture.
Real Madrid 6 - 0 Alaves
There are the games where a team just cannot go wrong even if they want to and Real Madrid’s 6-0 rout over 14th-placed Alaves is such an example. A goal in the second minute of the match set the tone for the Los Blancos, after which they just continued to do what they are best at - dominate teams. The latter part of the first half was where the visitors managed to play with some pride and restricted Real Madrid to just the 1 goal lead going into the break.
Alaves had a miserable spell of play waiting for them on the other side, with the floodgates opening as soon as the 47th minute, when the league leaders scored their second goal. Subsequently, they scored the third, fourth and fifth goal in the 54th, 65th, and the 67th minute respectively and left their visitors with no answer. Alaves did not have a clue about how to react and in the end, the Los Blancos signed off with the 6th goal in the 91st minute.