MADRID: Atletico Madrid moved 9 factors away from Barcelona in La Liga on Saturday after beating them 1-0 to ship a serious increase to their hopes of successful the title, after Actual Madrid drew with Villarreal.
Yannick Carrasco completed brilliantly from vary after errors from Gerard Pique and Marc-Andre ter Stegen left the objective gaping however Barca, and a below-par Lionel Messi, failed to reply on the Wanda Metropolitano.
As an alternative, Atletico recorded their first league victory over Barcelona in 10 years, which places them three factors forward of Actual Madrid, with a sport in hand, and leaves their opponents languishing in tenth.
Diego Simeone’s males sit second within the desk, degree on factors with early leaders Actual Sociedad.
Actual Madrid had earlier been held to a 1-1 draw by in-form Villarreal, one other slip-up for the reigning champions to implement the sense that this could possibly be Atletico’s 12 months.
And beating Barcelona in La Liga for the primary time since 2010 — earlier than Simeone arrived as coach — will do wonders for the group’s perception and extends what’s now a substantial benefit within the desk.
It additionally extends Atletico’s unbeaten run within the league to 24 matches.
One other disappointing day for Barca was soured additional by the sight of Pique hobbling off in tears with what seemed a knee harm.
Pique was harm throughout a collision with Angel Correa and was in misery as he departed.
Antoine Griezmann virtually put Barca in entrance towards his previous membership whereas Marcos Llorente went closest for Atletico, skimming the crossbar after a neat alternate between Kieran Trippier and Correa down the precise.
Messi might need scored however was uncharacteristically hesitant, with a fair half about to complete goalless till two errors gifted Atletico the lead.
Pique was caught out of place after a heavy contact and Mario Hermoso did nicely to free Carrasco. Ter Stegen, already upfield, rushed out to fill the hole Pique had left however Carrasco’s first contact feathered the ball by the goalkeeper’s legs earlier than a curling end from 50 yards despatched the ball into the open internet.
Clement Lenglet ought to have equalised however headed Messi’s cross straight at Jan Oblak but Barcelona have been removed from dominant and Messi struggled for his normal affect.
Philippe Coutinho got here on and Pique hobbled off. Messi floated a free-kick vast and noticed a shot blocked earlier than substitute Martin Braithwaite was given a late likelihood after a poor kick by Oblak. However Barca have been unable to discover a manner by.
Earlier, a patched-up Actual Madrid needed to dangle on for a draw towards Villarreal.
Mariano Diaz gave Madrid the lead after simply 105 seconds however Zinedine Zidane’s group pale at La Ceramica and Villarreal claimed a deserved level by Gerard Moreno’s second-half penalty.
“It seems like a small reward,” mentioned Zidane. “We deserved extra at the moment for the sport we performed. I am aggravated due to the hassle from the boys.”
Mariano was virtually offered final summer time however needed to stand in for Karim Benzema, who’s injured, and Luka Jovic, who examined constructive for coronavirus on Friday.
Sergio Ramos, Eder Militao and Casemiro have been all lacking following the worldwide break, leaving Nacho Fernandez and an unfit Raphael Varane to fill in on the again, whereas Martin Odegaard made a uncommon begin in midfield.
Given the absentees, a draw could not fear Zidane an excessive amount of, significantly towards a buoyant Villarreal facet who sat second at kick-off after 4 victories on the bounce.
However one other slip means Madrid have now received solely three of their final seven video games in all competitions, with an important go to to Inter Milan to come back within the Champions League on Wednesday.