La Liga: Ronaldo & Kaka on target for Real; Piatti pops Atletico’s bubble; Getafe stuff Valencia; Depor keep Xerez rock-bottom


Villarreal 0 – Real Madrid 2 (La Liga, September 23, 2009) (Longer highlights here.) It took Cristiano Ronaldo just 120 seconds to break a Real Madrid record of being the first Los Blancos player to score in the first four straight La Liga games. CR9 made history by cutting in from the left and firing a low shot into the Villarreal near post. The Yellow Submarine were sunk in the 33rd minute as Gonzalo Rodriguez picked up his second yellow card for a rash challenge on Kaka. (First half highlights here.) Real battered down the Villareal goal at the start of the second half without success. Eventually Real did double their lead after the hosts had given away a penalty, Kaka dispatching the spot kick.

Atletico Madrid 2 – Almeria 2 (La Liga, September 23, 2009) Atletico’s porous defence conceded after 26 minutes at home to Almeria as Pablo Piatti had the simple job of slotting the ball into the net. But within sixty seconds the Rojiblancos had levelled as Cleber Santana sidefooted home from 10-yards. A screw-up in the Almeria defence allowed Diego Forlan to score ten minutes into the second half. But just as Atleti thought they’d picked up the win, Pablo Piatti scored a 90th minute leveller to earn Almeria a point.

Espanyol 2 – Malaga 1 (La Liga, September 23, 2009) After Fernando’s deflected shot gave Malaga the lead, second half goals from Ben Sahar and Ivan Alonso turned the match in the Catalan’ favour.

Valladolid 1 – Osasuna 2 (La Liga, September 23, 2009) Walter Pandiani put the visitors ahead in the first half with an incredible lob from 35-yards out. The hosts went down to 10-men, but after the break Diego Costa scored a solo stunner after breaking down the left and scoring from an acute angle. A scrappy winner from Jorge Galan earned Osasuna a valuable away win.

Tenerife 1 – Athletic Bilbao 0 (La Liga, September 23, 2009) A Mikel Alonso header in the 87th minute won the match for Tenerife.

Xerez 0 – Deportivo La Coruna 3 (La Liga, September 23, 2009) Rock-bottom Xerez went behind after 26 minutes when Juca scored a cracking free-kick for Depor. The game was effectively over when Leandro Gioda headed into his own net after 68 minutes. Substitute Riki added a third to give Deportivo a comfortable win.

Getafe 3 – Valencia 1 (La Liga, September 23, 2009) After David Villa had opened for Valencia, a brace from Manu del Moral and a brilliant free-kick from Pedro Leon saw Getafe earn their second win of the season.