Atletico Madrid extend lead in La Liga

Peter Jenson
·2-min read

Atletico Madrid have extended their lead at the top of La Liga with a 1-0 win over Getafe as second-placed rivals Real Madrid stumbled to a 1-1 draw with relegation-battlers Eiche.

Prolific striker Luis Suarez got the only goal of the match at the Wanda Metropolitano - the Uruguayan marksman scoring in the 20th minute with a glancing header from a Yannick Carrasco free-kick.

Getafe had chances to equalise but Xabier Etxeita blazed over when set up by Jaime Mata's clever flick.

Atletico held on for the win which means they will end the year three points clear of Real who have also played a game more.

It was the perfect way to mark Diego Simeone's 500th game in charge and it meant Atletico have not been beaten at home in 2020.

"We have always gone forward game by game since the day I arrived so we can focus on the present," Simeone said. "I always wanted to come back and help the club grow."

Madrid looked ready to romp early in the match at promoted Elche as Marcelo had already hit the crossbar before Luka Modric put the defending champions ahead in the 20th.

Elche goalkeeper Edgar Badia did well to push a blistering strike by Marco Asensio onto his bar, only for the rebound to fall to Modric to head in.

Madrid, however, failed to capitalise on their superior play for the rest of the first half and a penalty plus some great saves by Badia ended up costing Zinedine Zidane's side two points.

Dani Carvajal gave away the penalty when he clung to Antonio Barragan's shirt in the area, sending Fidel Chaves to the spot to beat Thibaut Courtois and equalise in the 52nd.

Lucas Boye almost put Elche ahead when he grazed the upright in the 63rd. Madrid then pressed for the winner, but Badia denied Carvajal and smothered Sergio Ramos' effort from close range.

Eden Hazard came on late as a Madrid substitute for his first action after a month sidelined with his latest injury.

Earlier Granada moved up to seventh with a 2-1 win over Valencia.

In a game marred by three red cards, Granada went behind to Kevin Gameiro's goal on 36 minutes.

But Kenedy levelled on half-time and with two minutes of normal time remaining Jorge Molina scored the winner with a header.

The game ran to 95 minutes and it ended with Valencia's nine men against Granada's 10.

The home side had Domingos Duarte sent off. Jason Remeseiro and Gonzalo Guedes were sent off for the visitors who are now 16th in the table.