Monday, 24 December 2007

Real Madrid moved seven points

Real Madrid moved seven points clear of Barcelona heading into the La Liga winter break after winning Sunday's 'El Clasico' 1-0 at the Camp Nou.

Julio Baptista's 36th minute strike when he found the net with a superb rising half-volley from 20 yards settled a tense derby where chances were at a premium.

The result increases the pressure on Barca coach Frank Rijkaard, who named Thierry Henry on the bench after his recent back problems but overlooked the France striker in favour of Bojan when chasing the game in the second half.

Elsewhere, Espanyol moved to within one point of their city rivals after winning 2-1 at Atletico Madrid.

Raul Tamudo equalised Simao Sabrosa's opener for Atletico, before Luis Garcia sealed the win five minutes from full-time.

Espanyol leapfrogged Villarreal up to third after they were held to a 1-1 draw by improving Recreativo Huelva.

Real Mallorca were soundly beaten 3-1 at Osasuna as their recent poor form continued.

Meanwhile, second bottom Deportivo La Coruna moved ten points clear of beleaguered Levante after winning 1-0 at their relegation rivals.

Sergio Gonzalez 85th minute penalty sealed a vital three points for Miguel Angel Lotina's side.

In Sunday's late game, Athletic Bilbao and Murcia fought out an entertaining 1-1 draw at San Mames.

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