Villarreal moves into third place in Spanish League

Juan Roman Riquelme and Diego Forlan scored a goal each on Sunday, and Villarreal rallied to beat Getafe 2-1 and move into third place in the Spanish league.

Villarreal trailed at El Madrigal stadium when striker Ivan “Riki” Sanchez-Rico scored in the 20th minute with an overhead kick, but Riquelme leveled in the 45th with a curling free kick that crossed the line via the crossbar.

Forlan scored the winner in the 62nd minute by volleying home from just inside the area after teammate Jose Mari Romero chested the ball into his path.

Also, Valencia edged lowly Alaves 1-0 and moved into fifth place. Defender Raul Albiol volleyed in the goal at Alaves’s Mendizorroza stadium from a corner in the eighth minute.

Later on Sunday, Real Madrid had the chance to move into third by getting at least a draw against high-flying Osasuna.

Also, it was: Racing Santander 1, Malaga 1; Sevilla 3, Real Sociedad 2; Espanyol 2, Zaragoza 2; and Mallorca 2, Atletico Madrid 2.

FC Barcelona leads the standings with 37 points, while Osasuna has 34.
Villarreal, Deportivo La Coruna and Valencia have 29 points each, one more than Madrid.

Five players were dismissed in Santander’s 1-1 draw with Malaga.

Malaga defender Anderson began the exodus in the 22nd minute.

Santander midfielder Victor “Vitolo” Anino was ejected in the 60th, and was followed by teammate Pablo Pinillos 11 minutes later.

Malaga was also reduced to nine players when midfielder Gerardo Garcia received a second yellow card in the 79th, although Santander then lost substitute David Aganzo three minutes later.

The goals arrived at the end of the first half through Malaga’s Cesar Navas and Santander’s Javi Casquero.

Substitute Kepa Blanco scored twice and striker Frederic Kanoute headed the other as Sevilla rallied with three goals in the last 13 minutes to beat Sociedad.

Sociedad, which had defender Daniel Cifuentes and midfielder Gaizka Garitano ejected in each half, scored through defender Mikel Labaka in the 27th minute and Garitano in the 62nd.

Espanyol captain Raul Tamudo grabbed two goals in a 2-2 draw with Zaragoza.

The Spain international scored in the 49th minute, although Zaragoza replied through midfielder David Generelo in the 51st and Argentine striker Diego Milito in the 65th.

Tamudo headed the equaliser in the 83rd.

Forward Maxi Rodriguez and midfielder Gonzalo Colsa scored in the first 14 minutes, but Atletico let its lead slip and drew 2-2 at Mallorca’s Son Moix stadium.

Defender Mark Iuliano led Mallorca’s rally with goals in the 19th and 84th minutes.

Atletico goalkeeper Ismael Falcon was sent off in the 73rd minute and Mallorca defender Fernando Navarro became the 11th player to be ejected in this weekend’s Spanish games 17 minutes later.

On Saturday, Barcelona set a club record of 12 victories in all competitions by beating Cadiz 3-1. Deportivo crushed Celta Vigo 3-0, while Athletic Bilbao downed last-place Real Betis 2-0. - Sapa-AP

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