Atletico Madrid defeated Huesca to regain sole possession of the Spanish league lead on Thursday, while Lionel Messi scored twice as Barcelona stayed in the title race with a victory over Getafe.
Lionel Messi’s double in a 5-2 win over Getafe helped Barcelona return to third place (Reuters Photo)
- Atlético Madrid defeated Huesca to regain sole possession of the Spanish La Liga
- Lionel Messi scored twice as Barcelona stayed in the title race with a victory over Getafe
- Defending champion Real Madrid had provisionally led La Liga on Wednesday by winning 3-0 at Cádiz.
Lionel Messi scored twice as Barcelona crushed Getafe 5-2 on Thursday to stay in the hunt for the La Liga title.
Messi gave Barca an early lead with the help of a pin-point pass from Sergio Busquets but Getafe pulled level with an own goal by Clement Lenglet.
The visitors then conceded a calamitous own goal when Sofian Chakla’s backpass deceived keeper David Soria and trickled over the line.
Messi extended Barca’s lead before halftime to move on to 25 La Liga goals this season but the Catalans slowed down in the second half and Turkish forward Enes Unal made for an interesting finish by converting a penalty in the 69th minute following a VAR review for a foul by Ronald Araujo.
The Uruguayan defender made amends by heading in Messi’s corner in the 87th minute to extend Barca’s lead and Antoine Griezmann slammed in a penalty in added time after being handed the ball by Messi.
The win took Barca back up to third place on 68 points, five behind leaders Atletico Madrid but with a game in hand.
ATLETICO BEAT HUESCA
Ángel Correa and Yannick Carrasco scored a goal in each half to secure a 2-0 home victory against Huesca for Atletico Madrid, which moved three points in front of second-place Real Madrid.
“This league is very complicated, we can’t relax,” Atlético coach Diego Simeone said. “We already have to start preparing for our next match.”
Atlético was coming off a 5-0 rout of last-place Eibar after two consecutive setbacks had allowed Madrid and Barcelona to move closer to the top.
Simeone was still without forwards Luis Suárez and João Félix because of injuries.
Correa, one of the players replacing Suárez and Félix, opened the scoring after going past a defender inside the area and firing a low shot into the net in the 39th minute at the Wanda Metropolitano Stadium. Carrasco sealed the victory by converting a cross inside the area in the 80th.
Correa had scored twice in the game against Eibar last weekend. It was the second consecutive loss for Huesca, which stayed just inside the relegation zone.
Real Sociedad regained fifth place by coming from behind to defeat Celta Vigo 2-1 at home, while Roberto Soldado scored twice as eighth-place Granada routed last-place Eibar 4-1.