Real top Spanish League with another derby winBy DPA, IANS
Monday, November 8, 2010
MADRID - Real Madrid kept the top spot in the Spanish league with a 2-0 home defeat of luckless neighbours Atletico Sunday.
Jose Mourinho’s team won thanks to early goals from Ricardo Carvalho and Mesut Oezil, and to Atletico’s habitually poor finishing in the Madrid derby matches.
Not since 1999 have Atletico managed to beat their glamorous neighbours.
Real now have 26 points from 10 games, one more than second-placed Barcelona, who won 3-1 away to Getafe earlier Sunday.
Carvalho calmly shot Real ahead in the 13th minute after being played through by Angel Di Maria, with Atletico claiming that Xabi Alonso had committed a foul.
Six minutes later it was 2-0. Oezil swung over a free-kick, which Atletico’s Jose Antonio Reyes inexplicably let drift into the net instead of clearing it.
Atletico fought back bravely and were furious not to be given a penalty for handball by Xabi Alonso. Sergio Aguero forced four good saves out of Iker Casillas, and Diego Forlan hit the Real post.
At the other end, Sergio Ramos, Karim Benzema and Marcelo all came close to making it 3-0.
Barcelona, for their part, had encountered few problems in Getafe, despite the sending-off of Gerard Pique.
The Spain defender was given a second red card 20 minutes from time for handball, and Miku scored for Getafe from the resulting penalty. But by then Barca were already 3-0 up and cruising to the top of the table.
Barca turned in their slickest performance of the season in a memorable first half, and could have reached half-time with a lead of five or six goals, so complete was their domination.
Lionel Messi shot them ahead in the 24th minute after a staggering seven-man move. Eleven minutes later, Messi set up David Villa to make it 2-0.
Pedro scored Barca’s third in the 66th minute, after a terrible back-pass from Cata Diaz.
Five minutes later, Pique stopped a shot with his arm and was sent off. Miku calmly converted the penalty. But the hosts never looked capable of turning the match round, especially after midfielder earned himself a second yellow card for a foul on Javier Mascherano.
Guardiola said: “In general, I am pleased with the result. We should have scored more goals in the first half, but i am satisfied.”
Earlier Sunday, Villarreal had consolidated themselves in third place with a 4-1 comeback thrashing of Athletic Bilbao.
The yellows now have 23 points, the same as Real ahead of the Madrid derby match.
Spain striker Fernando Llorente gave Bilbao the lead after just seven minutes, but goals from Nilmar, Santi Cazorla, Guiseppe Rossi and Jefferson Montero gave Villarreal a handsome win.
Sunday turned out to be a good day for strugglers Osasuna, Deportivo Coruna and Zaragoza.
Osasuna caned Hercules 3-0, Deportivo beat Levante 2-1 away and Zaragoza - in the most dramatic match of the weekend so far - came from behind to beat Mallorca 3-2 to claim their first win.
Sunday’s other early game was a tame 1-1 draw between Almeria and Sporting Gijon.
Zaragoza are now joint bottom on seven points with Malaga, who were beaten 1-0 by Espanyol on Saturday. Then come Levante on eight, and Hercules and Almeria together on nine.
The 10th round of matches will finish Monday with an interesting clash between inconsistent Sevilla, who are joint seventh along with Atletico Madrid and Mallorca - and fifth-placed Valencia.