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25.01.2010 11:11

Spanish League Roundup: Week 19

Barça’s win on Saturday evening put the pressure on the chasing pack to win or risk losing touch with the reigning league champions. Meanwhile, at the wrong end of the table, life is getting bleaker for Jerez and Zaragoza.

Cristiano Ronaldo scored his first goals since the middle of December to hand Real Madrid a 2-0 home victory over Malaga. The victory was bitter-sweet for the Portuguese forward, who was red-carded some 20 minutes before the end of the match.

Meanwhile, Valencia secured a goalless draw on their travels to Tenerife and so completed their best ever first half of a league season away from home in the Club’s history. Real Madrid remain five points adrift of Barça while Valencia are a further five points behind Real Madrid in third place.

Mallorca continue to impress

Mallorca brought the curtain down on an excellent first half of the season with a 1-1 draw here in Barcelona against Espanyol. Mallorca hang on to fourth place with 34 points, ahead of Deportivo on goal difference.

Deportivo came out on top in the battle for the Europa Cup places against Bilbao (3-1) but Brazilian defender Felipe Luis fractured an ankle while scoring the Galicians’ opening goal and looks set to miss the rest of the season as well as the World Cup.

Sevilla finally took all three points against Almeria after more than two months without a home win. The only goal of the match was scored by former Almeria player Negredo after a defensive mix-up. The three points keep Sevilla in sixth place after their recent poor league form threatened to push them out of the European places.

Moving down to the mid-table positions, Getafe secured a narrow 1-0 home win in the Madrid derby against Atlético and can still hope for a top six finish. For their part, Racing Santander did well to take the three points away to Sporting (0-1).

Jerez and Zaragoza cut adrift

While the top six accumulated four wins and two draws, the situation at the foot of the table remains desperate for Jerez and, to a lesser extent, Zaragoza. Bottom side Jerez slumped to yet another home defeat against Osasuna (1-2) and with half of the season already over they have just eight points.

Meanwhile, Zaragoza lost 4-2 away to a rapidly improving Villarreal and stay last but one with 14 points. There is some hope for Tenerife, however, who remain in the drop zone on goal difference but are tied on 17 points with Valladolid and Malaga.

Spanish League Roundup: Week 19

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