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Day of drama as Spain’s top flight goes goal crazy: La Liga Round-Up and Highlights
- Updated: 30 April, 2012
There were some big wins at the top and bottom of La Liga on Sunday as the remaining games of week 36 produced 17 goals; including seven from a rampant Barcelona at Rayo Vallecano.
Real Madrid’s dreams of Champions League success may have abruptly ended but Jose Mourinho’s men showed no European hangover as they closed in on the La Liga title with a comfortable 3-0 victory at home to Sevilla in the day’s early kick off. Talisman Cristiano Ronaldo opened the scoring in the 19th minute as he fired in his 43rd league goal of the campaign, and a double from Karim Benzema completed the rout. Sevilla weren’t without their chances, especially in the first half, but truth be told Real Madrid were always in control and rarely needed to move out of second gear. A win in Bilbao midweek will seal Real Madrid’s first title since 2008.
Barcelona ended a turbulent week with a stunning 7-0 thrashing of Rayo Vallecano. In a horrid fortnight, the Catalans had lost hopes of the league title, been knocked out of the Champions League, and have even changed coach for next season, however last night they returned to their scintillating best; determined to ensure Pep Guardiola’s last month in charge is a happy one. Braces from Messi and Pedro, combined with goals from Keita, Thiago, and a Roberto Correra own goal, sealed the most comprehensive of wins at the Campo De Futbol de Vallacas. Messi second goal moves him on terms with Ronaldo in the battle for the Pichichi.
Malaga moved level with Valencia in third place after Nacho Camacho’s first-half header sealed a 1-0 win at La Rosaleda. Valencia never really looked like responding once Camacho leapt to score on 29 minutes, and now face the nightmare scenario of losing a place in next season’s Champions League to local rivals Levante. Unai Emery’s cause wasn’t helped with the sending off of Feghouli on the hour aftern he was deemed to have lead with his elbow on a challenge on Eliseu. In contrast, Malaga’s march on the Champions League places shows few signs of stopping. They have now picked up 14 points from their last eight games.
Fresh from booking their place in the Europa League final, Athletic Club faced Real Zaragoza in a game which could have delivered a fatal blow in Zaragoza’s relegation fight. Earlier in the week, winger Angel Lafita told reporters that “Everything depends on a win on Sunday”. Thankfully for fans of Zaragoza that is exactly what they got, courtesy of goals from Oriol and Apoño. The win means that Zaragoza still have an outside chance of remaining in the division.
Record signing Radamel Falcao secured a last gasp point for Atletico Madrid in a game they looked to have thrown away against Real Betis. After Koke had smashed the ball home just after the hour mark, Atletico looked like they were on their way to a vital three points. But two goals in the last four minutes from Real Betis duo, Pozuelo and Pereira completed the most dramatic of turnarounds. However, as he has done so many times this season, the Columbian Falcao proved to be the hero with what was virtually the last kick of the game. His header ensuring that the topsy turvy game finished 2-2
REAL MADRID 3-0 SEVILLA
REAL ZARAGOZA 2-0 ATHLETIC CLUB
MALAGA 1-0 VALENCIA
REAL BETIS 2-2 ATLETICO MADRID
RAYO VALLECANO 0-7 BARCELONA
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