Atletico Madrid prolonged their lead on the prime of La Liga on Wednesday after Luis Suarez fired them to a 1-0 win over Getafe whereas Actual Madrid may solely draw 1-1 at Elche.
Suarez struck within the twentieth minute with an excellent header from Yannick Carrasco’s cross to maneuver Diego Simeone’s Atletico as much as 35 factors, two forward of native rivals Madrid after they had been pegged again by a Fidel Chaves penalty following Luka Modric’s early opener.
Actual Sociedad, Sevilla and Villarreal are all an additional seven factors again, with Barcelona 10 behind Atletico in sixth after their 1-1 draw with Eibar on Tuesday.
Atletico have additionally performed two fewer matches than reigning champions Madrid after a scrappy win emblematic of Simeone’s reign on his five hundredth match as membership coach.
“Once I obtained on the aircraft to return right here I believed that after I left the membership (as a participant) that I at all times wished to return again,” stated Simeone, who’s in his tenth yr as Atletico coach.
“I discovered males (Koke, Saul Niguez) who wished to get the membership out of the dangerous patch it was in, and I’ve a relationship with them that goes past soccer.”
Uruguay ahead Suarez’s eighth purpose of the season was a very good because it obtained for Atletico, who regardless of fielding a robust line-up didn’t impress in a match of little incident on the Wanda Metropolitano.
Nonetheless Atletico’s third straight win retains them prime of the pile after a fraught previous couple of days during which Diego Costa was allowed to depart and Kieran Trippier was banned till the tip of February for betting breaches.
– ‘Two factors dropped’ –
Zinedine Zidane’s Madrid knew that no matter occurred within the late fixture they’d path Atletico going into the brand new yr, however they appeared on track for a routine win at struggling Elche when Modric opened the scoring within the twentieth minute.
Croatian Modric pounced to position an ideal header within the prime nook after Marco Asensio’s longe vary shot thumped again out off the bar, the second time Madrid had hit the woodwork within the early minutes.
The away aspect thought that they had a penalty 9 minutes earlier than the break when referee Jorge Figueroa Vazquez pointed to the spot for what he thought was an Ivan Marcone handball, however the awarding was cancelled following a VAR verify.
Elche then obtained a spot-kick of their very own 5 minutes into the second half when Dani Carvajal was caught tearing at Antonio Barragan’s shirt, with Fidel stepping as much as stroke residence the leveller.
Lucas Boye then hit the publish for the hosts earlier than residence keeper Edgar Badia made two excellent stops deny Carvajal and Sergio Ramos as Madrid pushed for a win that may have stored them degree on factors with their capital metropolis rivals.
“Once I take a look at how we performed within the first half, I inform myself it’s two factors dropped,” stated Zidane.
“Loads of groups will drop factors. It’s a tough season, and we nonetheless have loads of matches left.”
– Granada in Euro hunt –
Earlier Granada moved to inside two factors of the Champions League locations after beating Valencia 2-1 in a feisty match the place three gamers had been despatched off in six second-half minutes.
Jorge Molina’s highly effective header two minutes from time retains Granada in seventh place on 24 factors, two behind fourth-placed Sevilla, Sociedad and Villarreal.
Valencia’s seventh league defeat of the season leaves them degree on 15 factors with Actual Valladolid, who’re third-from-bottom within the relegation zone.
Javi Gracia’s aspect haven’t received a La Liga match of their final seven makes an attempt and had their activity made more durable when Jason and Goncalo Guedes had been despatched off inside three minutes of one another halfway by means of the second half.
Granada’s Domingos Duarte was then proven a straight crimson card three minutes later after he cynically hacked down Manu Vallejo as he tried to burst by means of on purpose with the scores nonetheless degree.
Molina punished the beleaguered away aspect by thumping residence Alberto Soro’s cross.