Barcelona ensured they remain top of La Liga after a thumping 4-0 victory over Levante on Sunday.
The Catalan giants went into the match in second place on the table following Atletico Madrid’s win over Sevilla earlier in the day and knew victory at the Estadio Ciudad de Valencia would not only send them back to the top of the table but also open up an 11-point gap over bitter rivals Real Madrid after their shock loss to Real Betis on Saturday.
After a scoreless first half, Tito Vilanova’s men turned on the style in the second, with Lionel Messi scoring twice in four minutes just after the break to put his side two goals to the good.
From there the result was never in doubt with Andres Iniesta firing home from the edge of the area in the 57th minute before Cesc Fabregas completed the rout six minutes later.
Meanwhile, Atletico ensured they kept pace with Barcelona after they demolished a ten-man Sevilla side at the Estadio Vicente Calderon.
Colombian striker Radamel Falcao rattled home his 10th goal of the season from the penalty spot in the 22nd minute after Fazio was sent off for a foul in the area.
Sevilla defender Emir Spahic then gifted the home side a second goal with 40 minutes on the clock, putting the ball in his own net from a stinging Arda Turan cross.
Koke made the game safe four minutes later, with Miranda adding gloss to the win in second half stoppage time after tapping in another Turan pass.
Getafe condemned Espanyol to their third successive defeat as they beat the Barcelona-based side 2-0.
On-loan Real Madrid midfielder Pedro Leon put the away side ahead after 17 minutes, with Mane scoring in the 91st minute to seal the victory.
In the day’s other game, Athletic Bilbao were held to a 1-1 draw at home by Deportivo La Coruna.
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