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La Liga wrap: Atletico stay in touch

SoccerNews in La Liga 18 Nov 2012

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Atletico Madrid defeated Granada 1-0 to stay in second position behind La Liga leaders Barcelona on Sunday.

A second-half goal from Turkish international Arda Turan was enough to see off Granada at the Estadio Nuevo Los Carmenes.

Atletico were keen to prove their defeat at Valencia last week was nothing more than a slip-up after recording eight successive wins.

But they did not have it their own way with Granada dominating possession for extended periods in the first half.

Granada had two opportunities to break the deadlock during the opening 45 minutes but Youssef El-Arabi’s close-range shot was dealt with by Belgian goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois, while Gabriel Torje saw his effort hit the post.

However, Diego Simeone’s side made the most of their chances with Turan turning in a Koke cross in the 61st minute.

The Madrid outfit held on for maximum points despite a red card to Mario Suarez and are now three points adrift of Barcelona and five ahead of fierce city rivals Real.

Meanwhile, a four-goal first half has helped Sevilla to a crushing 5-1 victory over Real Betis.

Former Arsenal winger Jose Antonio Reyes and Federico Fazio put the hosts ahead inside the opening five minutes.

And the pair added another two goals before the break as Sevilla ended the contest.

Ruben Castro cut the deficit in the second half but Ivan Rakitic restored Sevilla’s four-goal advantage deep into stoppage time.

Elsewhere on Sunday, Levante defeated Deportivo La Coruna 2-0 in a match that saw both teams reduced to 10 men, Getafe overcame Real Valladolid 2-1 thanks to late goals from Alexis and Lafita, while Celta Vigo and Mallorca played out a 1-1 draw.

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