Barcelona stay top of La Liga after win over Athletic

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Barcelona are top the table and the usual contenders are among the pacesetters at the conclusion of week three in La Liga, but Real Madrid have plenty of thinking to do after another defeat.

Barcelona 2-0 Athletic Club

Luis Enrique’s men continued their 100% start to the season as Neymar came off the bench to score twice in five minutes and finally break Athletic's stubborn resistance.

His first came 11 minutes from time when he slotted home after being slid through by Lionel Messi. The Argentine was the provider once again as he ran tirelessly down the right wing and pulled the ball back for the new Brazilian captain to take a touch and coolly slide his second into the corner.

Real Madrid 1-2 Atletico Madrid

Diego Simeone’s side sealed their second straight domestic win at the Bernabeu and Arda Turan was hero as he came off the bench to mark his return from injury with the winning goal.

Tiago Mendes had given Atleti the lead with a header from Koke’s corner before Cristiano Ronaldo marked his comeback with the equaliser from the penalty spot, but Turan popped up to sweep home the decisive strike 14 minutes from time.

Two defeats already for Real leave them four points behind Atletico and six away from Barca.

Valencia 3-1 Espanyol

Pablo Piatti, Daniel Parejo and Paco Alcacer were all on target for a second straight match as Valencia went second in La Liga.

Sergio Garcia grabbed a consolation for the visitors from the penalty spot in stoppage-time after he was brought down by Javi Fuego in the box.

Sevilla 2-0 Getafe

Unai Emery’s men went third in La Liga after goals from Carlos Bacca and Aleix Vidal sealed a routine win at Roman Sanchez Pizjuan.

The first goal came from the spot just before the break after Vicente Guaita caught Grzegorz Krychowiak with a punch in the area, before a neat move saw Vidal arrive at the far post to seal the points three minutes from time.

Celta Vigo 2-2 Real Sociedad

The Basque side produced a marvellous comeback against Real Madrid last time out, and they overturned a two-goal deficit once again at Balaidos.

Fabian Orellana and Joaquin Larrivey put the hosts 2-0 up, before substitute Imanol Agirretxe pulled one back with 20 minutes remaining and Jonny put through his own net in stoppage-time to give Sociedad a share of the points.

Rayo Vallecano 2-3 Elche

A five-goal thriller at Vallecas went Elche’s way for their first win of the season.
Gael Kakuta equalised just before half-time to cancel out Edu Albacar’s earlier effort. A fine individual goal from Cristian Jonathas and a deflected Pedro Mosquera effort gave the visitors breathing space, before Alberto Bueno grabbed a consolation from the spot in stoppage-time.

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Eibar 0-1 Deportivo La Coruna

The battle of the promoted sides went Depor’s way after Juan Dominguez struck the winner after just 12 minutes to register his side’s first win since returning to the top flight.

Almeria 1-1 Cordoba

Both goals came inside the opening 19 minutes at Juegos Mediterraneos, with Cartabia Fede cancelling out Edgar Mendez Ortega’s earlier effort as both sides doubled their point tallies for the season.

Malaga 0-0 Levante

Despite a whopping 18 shots, the hosts could not find the breakthrough at La Rosaleda. Juanmi had a goal wrongly chalked off for offside though, as replays showed him in line with the last defender.

Granada 0-0 Villarreal

There was another goalless draw at Los Carmenes, where Granada continued their unbeaten start to the season.

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