Ronaldo bags a brace as Real Madrid win at Xerez; Bilbao lose at Villarreal; Valencia held in Gijon

Xerez 0 – Real Madrid 3 (La Liga, February 13, 2010) A shock was on the cards at the interval at Xerez as Real were struggling to find their rhythm on the difficult surface. (First half highlights here.) Real had to wait until the 64th minute to find the breakthrough and when it arrived it came from an unlikely source as Alvaro Arbeloa found himself collecting the final ball from a back to front attack and, to his credit, the former Liverpool defender produced a calm finish. With the ice broken, Real were quick to bag a second as Kaka whipped in a right wing cross that Cristiano Ronaldo converted with a bullet header. Two minutes later it was three as Kaka and Cristiano Ronaldo combined again for the returning forward to claim his brace.

Villareal 2 – Athletic Bilbao 1 (La Liga, February 13, 2010) Joan Capdevilla fired the “Yellow Submarine” into the lead, Igor Gabilondo responded with a screamer only for Nilmar to win the match on the stroke of half time. Three players were sent off in the closing stages of the match.

Sporting Gijon 1 – Valencia 1 (La Liga, February 13, 2010) Valencia fell behind after six minutes at Gijon after Diego Castro broke the deadlock, and they had to wait until 15 minutes from time to level through Juan Mata.