La Liga: Rivals soar as Atlético Madrid drop points

Atlético Madrid's Deyna Castellanos looks on during a Primera Iberdrola match against Real Betis Balompie Femenino at Ciudad Deportiva Wanda on November 15, 2020, in Alcala de Henares, Madrid, Spain.
Atlético Madrid's Deyna Castellanos looks on during a Primera Iberdrola match. (Photo by Oscar J. Barroso)

The top five teams of the Primera Iberdrola are neck and neck in terms of points. While currently ranked fourth, Atlético Madrid have cause for concern after another week of missed opportunity.

Overall, it was goals galore on gameweek 10 in Spain. Five of the nine matches had six or more goals. There was a total of 46 goals across all fixtures, meaning there was an average of more than five goals per match. It’s safe to say that the week was not lacking in action at all.


Jenni Hermoso got the scoring up and running in Barcelona. She tapped the ball in from close range during the opening four minutes. Lieke Martens then doubled the lead on 10 minutes. This was swiftly followed by a left-footed half volley goal from the edge of the area. Martens rounded off her 15-minute hat-trick with an outstanding cross-cum-shot that completely bamboozled Raquel Poza in the Santa Teresa goal.

Hermoso then popped up with another tap-in before completing a hat-trick of her own when she cut inside onto her left and bent a delightful ball into the net. However, she wasn’t done there. Just before half-time, she got onto the end of a cross at the back post and headed the ball in from close range to get her fourth. A minute later, Mariona Caldentey arrived in the box to nod the ball into the net, making 8-0 at half-time.

Players of FC Barcelona celebrate a goal against Santa Teresa at Johan Cruyff Stadium in Barcelona, Spain.
Players of FC Barcelona celebrate a goal against Santa Teresa at Johan Cruyff Stadium in Barcelona, Spain. (Photo by David Ramirez)

It was relatively quiet second half, especially when compared to the first. Just one goal of which to speak came from Asisat Oshoala’s rebound in the final 10 minutes.

Barcelona remain third in the league behind Real Madrid and Granadilla Tenerife. Though, the Catalan club have three games in hand on those ahead of them. Given that they haven’t dropped a point all season, one would expect them to eventually leapfrog into the top spot.


Atlético got things started with some very neat passing on the edge of the Bilbao box. This provided Deyna Castellanos with the right amount of space to bend in a wonderful shot, leaving the Bilbao goalkeeper rooted to the spot. Ainhoa Vicente then equalised for the home team after a poor touch from Pauline Peyraud-Magnin in the Atléti goal. Peyraud-Magnin was quickly closed down and Bilbao took full advantage just before half-time.

Six minutes into the second half, the Madrid side took the lead once again. It was a powerful header from Ludmila into the top corner, followed by another headed goal from Amanda Sampedro.

With 14 minutes left in regular time, it appeared that Las RojiBlancas had a commanding lead. Yet, Bilbao responded through Lucía García who scored from a narrow angle. The youngster then completed the comeback in the 95th minute when her deflected shot bounced beyond the reach of Peyraud-Magnin.

The late disappointment for Atléti is the fourth time that the Madrid side have dropped points this season. If they continue this kind of form, they risk not only missing out on the title but also missing out on a place in the Champions League as well.


It was a relegation six-pointer between Logroño and Sporting Huelva as both sides looked to drag themselves away from the bottom of the table.

Dany Helena’s towering header gave the away side the lead in the second half. From there, they looked to be taking all three points. However, Logroño’s Inés Juan Altamira put a stop to their victory. Her looping effort left Chelsea Ashurst scrambling in the Huelva goal. But the strike foiled the goalkeeper and levelled the game in stoppage time.

A point is far from ideal for either side. Yet, it does put a little distance between themselves and the teams at the foot of the table.


Real Madrid kept their Champions League ambitions very much on course with a victory over mid-table Sevilla. Aurélie Kaci got the scoring underway when she arched her back to direct a header in off the post. Teresa Abelleira’s powerful shot shortly after made the game 2-0.

Sevilla then pulled the game back to 2-2 thanks to goals from on-loan Barcelona teenager Clàudia Pina and Inma Gabarro. From there, an unlikely comeback appeared on the cards. However, their joy was short lived as 18-year-old Teresa Merida diverted Kenti Robles’ cross into her own net giving Real the lead once again.

The home side extended their lead when Sofia Jakobsson finished off a counterattack by converting at the near post. Veteran Brazil international Thaisa then rounded off the scoring to make it 5-2.

The win at the weekend is Real Madrid’s seventh victory in eight games. Their only defeat came at the hands of first-placed Granadilla Tenerife.


Deportivo recorded their first points and first victory of the season in a thrilling encounter away at Eibar. It took less than a minute for the away side to take the lead through Peke Barea. Yet, their lead was short-lived as Eibar responded almost instantly via Sara Navarro. The home side then took the lead when Arola Aparicio finished off a rapid counterattack following a Deportivo corner.

Eibar held the lead at the break. Nevertheless, Deportivo had parity in the opening 10 minutes of the second period when Gabriela García headed her side level. Shortly after, they then had the lead once again through Peke Barea. Los Blanquiazules then widened the gap when Alba Merino converted 20 minutes from time.

Deportivo still remain rooted to the bottom of the table. Now, they are finally off the mark in terms of points. This could be moment that finally kickstarts their season.


After a goalless first half in the Spanish capital, the game really sprang to life after the interval. The home side came out of the dressing room flying with three goals in the opening 10 minutes of the half. This included a brace from Priscilla Borja and a goal from Laura Domínguez sandwiched in the middle. Valeria Cantuario then solidified all three points for the hosts after scoring their fourth of the match. Valencia were able to score a consolation goal deep into stoppage time. Though, it was too little too late for the visitors to mount any kind of comeback.


Levante stormed to victory over Rayo Vallecano on Saturday, extending their run to four straight wins. Teenage sensation Eva Navarro gave her side the lead in the opening minute. After some intricate passing on the edge of the area, Navarro slotted the ball left-footed into the far corner.

Just a quarter of an hour later, Levante had a strangle hold on the game. This came following a quick-fire brace from Esther Gonzalez which gave them a commanding 3-0 lead. Paula Andújar then pulled a goal back for her side to reduce the hosts’ advantage. However, not to be overshadowed, Navarro stepped up once again to grab a brace of her own just before the half-time whistle. Then to add insult to injury Andújar scored at the wrong end to really stamp Levante’s dominance on proceedings.


Granadilla Tenerife, the surprise of the season, continued their remarkable run with their latest victims being Real Betis. Ivory Coast international Ange N’Guessan got the first goal of the match. After a powerful run into the Betis area, N’Guessan followed through with a low driven shot into the back of the net.

The Canary Islands-based club then doubled their lead in the second half. This came when the Betis goalkeeper failed to deal with a lateral free-kick from Patricia Gavira Collado and it found its way into the top corner. Serbian international Allegra Poljak then found herself behind the Betis backline and calmly picked her spot and passed the ball into the back of the net for her side’s third goal.

Betis responded well and had plenty of opportunities to find a goal. Their pressure was eventually rewarded when Rosa Otermin’s lobbed effort made it over the line despite the best efforts of Aline Villares Reis in the Tenerife goal. However, Tenerife’s three goals were ultimately too much for Betis to match.

The victory takes Tenerife to the lofty heights of first place in the table. Even at this early stage of the season, they will now be dreaming of a Champions League spot.


In the lowest scoring match of the weekend, only one goal separated Real Sociedad and Espanyol. Nerea Eizaguirre’s long range effort was just beyond the reach of Espanyol goalkeeper Kelsey Dossey. The decisive goal meant Sociedad took all three points to keep the pace with the leading pack.

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