Barcelona superstar Lionel Messi left the game injured in Barcelona’s 1-1 draw with Atletico Madrid at Camp Nou on Wednesday.
Ivan Rakitic’s first-half goal was cancelled out by a superb effort from second-half substitute Angel Correa as the La Liga rivals shared the spoils on the night.
Rakitic headed the defending champions in front just before half-time — the Croatia international redirecting a perfectly-placed Andres Iniesta cross down and past a helpless Jan Oblak in the Atleti goal.
The second half saw Sergio Busquets exit in the 51st minute with the flu and Messi leave with a groin problem in the 59th, and Correa equalised almost immediately after his fellow Argentine’s departure.
In the 61st minute, Correa received a Fernando Torres pass just outside the box, cut inside past a fallen Javier Mascherano and dragged his right-footed shot across Barca keeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen to earn the 2014 champions a valuable point on the road.
Real Madrid missed the chance to make La Liga history as they were held to a 1-1 draw by Villarreal at the Bernabeu.
Sunday’s victory over Espanyol made it 16 league wins in a row for Los Blancosstretching back to March, equalling the all-time mark set by Pep Guardiola’s Barcelona in the 2010-11 season.
But Zinedine Zidane’s men were unable to secure the record outright as they fell behind to a Bruno Soriano penalty given for a Sergio Ramos handball on the stroke of half-time. Soriano scored with an expertly executed Panenka spot kick.
Ramos made amends when he levelled three minutes into the second period with a towering header and Real dominated after a hesitant first 45 minutes, but could not find a second goal.
Iago Aspas’ penalty three minutes from time earned Celta Vigo their first win of the season as they overcome Sporting Gijon 2-1 at Balaidos.
Celta defender Hugo Mallo scored his first La Liga goal of the season in the 66th minute before Duje Cop equalised from the penalty spot with 10 minutes remaining and the sides looked to be sharing the spoils.
However, the former Liverpool forward had the chance to condemn Gijon to their second successive defeat with a spot kick of his own, which he buried into the bottom left corner to give goalkeeper Ivan Cuellar no chance and take all three points.
A spectacular strike from Raul Garcia and quick reactions from Aymeric Laporte earned Athletic Bilbao a 2-1 win at Granada on Wednesday night.
Garcia’s ability to score special goals had been demonstrated with a stunning winner at Deportivo La Coruna on Sept. 11 and he was at it again at Los Carmenes, but Granada went in level at the break with a goal just before the interval from Mehdi Carcela.
However, Ernesto Valverde’s men restored their lead with 13 minutes to go through highly-rated defender Laporte, who fired home a rebound from close range after Granada goalkeeper Guillermo Ochoa had saved Mikel San Jose’s headed effort.
It was a third straight win for Athletic in LaLiga and lifted them to seventh, but Granada now have just two points from their first five games with only crisis club Valencia beneath them.
Real Sociedad romped to a comfortable 4-1 victory over early pace-setters Las Palmas at the Estadio Anoeta on Wednesday night.
Willian Jose got the ball rolling in the first minute and rounded off the hosts’ scoring with a 53rd-minute penalty, with Carlos Vela netting a 21st-minute spot-kick and David Zurutuza heading the third.
The result left La Real eighth, three places and two points behind Las Palmas, who began the season with back-to-back wins but are now starting to find life rather tougher in the top flight.
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Culled from ESPNFC