Lopetegui in Real trouble: La Liga Weekend Round-up

The top of the La Liga table changed hands more than once during an eventful weekend in Spain’s top tier while it was more woe for Real Madrid and Julen Lopetegui. Here’s your comprehensive round-up of the weekend’s action:

 

Friday

Celta Vigo 0-1 Alavés

They were only promoted in 2016 but Alavés led the way from top of the table heading into Saturday and Sunday’s fixtures after their win at Balaídos. A well-worked free kick yielded the only goal of the game when Tomás Pina tucked home Victor Laguardia’s cut-back just before the hour mark.

 

Saturday

Real Madrid 1-2 Levante

Los Blancos’ poor start to the season continued at home as Levante got their first win at the Bernabéu since 2007. José Morales opened the scoring after just 6 minutes before Roger converted a controversial penalty given by VAR to double the visitors’ lead 7 minutes later.

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Real had a goal disallowed by VAR before Marcelo finally broke a scoring drought that had stretched to over 8 hours – the worst in the club’s history. The defeat leaves Julen Lopetegui’s position as manager in serious doubt with reports in Spain suggesting he was on the verge of the sack.

 

Valencia 1-1 Leganés

Despite not having lost at the Mestalla yet this season, Valencia’s disappointing home record continued with a fifth successive draw. Gerard Gumbau put the visitors in front before José Gayá’s deflected effort spared Los Che’s blushes 4 minutes from time.

 

Villarreal 1-1 Atlético Madrid

Diego Simeone’s side missed the chance to go top of the table as they made it four trips to the Estadio de la Cerámica without a win. A rare goal from Filipe Luis opened the scoring but Villarreal had a scoring full-back of their own in Mario Gasper, who equalised 14 minutes later.

 

Barcelona 4-2 Sevilla

The game of the weekend came from the Nou Camp where the holders hosted the initial leaders. Philippe Coutinho’s strike after 2 minutes was followed by a second from Lionel Messi before the Argentine was forced off with a fractured arm.

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Luis Suarez’s first goal in seven games took the scoreline to 3-0 before heroics from Marc-Andre Ter Stegan kept Sevilla out. That was until Pablo Sarabia’s shot deflected off former Sevilla defender Clement Lenglet and flew past the German goalkeeper. Another former Sevilla player, Ivan Rakitic, scored the hosts’ fourth before Luis Muriel added another consolation for the away side.

 

Sunday

Rayo Vallecano 1-2 Getafe

Two quick-fire goals from the visitors settled this Madrid derby as Rayo’s poor run continued at the Estadio de Vallecas. Dimitri Foulquier’s header was followed by an own goal from Sergio Akieme to give the visitors a 2-0 second-half lead. Raul De Tomas struck with an exquisite volley to pull one back for the home side but they remain without a win since the 14th of September.

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Eibar 1-1 Athletic Club

The two Basque clubs could not be separated at Ipurúa as goals from Charles and Iñaki Williams came 4 minutes apart during the first half. Athletic remain dangerously close to the relegation zone after no wins in their last six games.

 

Huesca 0-2 Espanyol

A brace from Borja Iglesias earned Espanyol all three points at El Alcoraz as the Catalan club moved up to second behind their city rivals Barcelona in the La Liga table. Huesca meanwhile sit rock bottom of the table without a win since the opening day of the season.

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Real Betis 0-1 Real Valladolid

Real Valladolid moved above Real Madrid and into 6th place with an impressive victory at the Benito Villamarín in Sunday’s late kick-off. A scintillating first-half counter attack was finished off by Antoñito, who found the gap between Pau López’s legs to score the game’s only goal.

 

Real Sociedad vs Girona

Two bottom-half clubs meet at Anoeta on Monday night as Real Sociedad look to build on their win in the Basque Country derby last time out. A win for La Real would take them up to 8th while Girona could move up 5 places with all three points.

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