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Dhaka Tribune

Atletico held by Betis, Las Palmas down

Update : 23 Apr 2018, 12:17 PM
Atletico Madrid failed to break down Real Betis in a 0-0 draw on Sunday which further reduced their slim chances of catching Barcelona at the top of La Liga, while Las Palmas were relegated after a crushing 4-0 home defeat by Alaves. Diego Simeone's Atletico moved 11 points behind Barcelona with four games remaining and the unbeaten leaders need one more point to win the title. With the Europa League semi-final first leg at Arsenal on Thursday in mind, Simeone rotated key players and Betis tried to take advantage.Javi Garcia missed two excellent chances and Cristian Tello struck the post for the visitors, who extended their club record run of games without conceding a goal to six. However, Atletico's defensive resilience ended Betis’ run of six wins in a row as they recorded their 11th consecutive home clean sheet. Aissa Mandi headed a Fernando Torres effort off the line and Saul Niguez struck the bar as Atletico also came close, but neither side could earn a victory."The team is heading into Thursday's game really well," Simeone said. "We made important changes and the players responded, I had to rotate to ensure we had fresh players." In the Canary Islands, Munir El Haddadi struck twice with Alvaro Medran and Ruben Sobrino also netting as four second-half goals from Alaves consigned Las Palmas to relegation in a mostly-empty stadium. Paco Jemez's side have 21 points from 34 games and are 13 short of Levante in 17th with only four matches left and they will join bottom side Malaga in the second division next season. Las Palmas have gone 12 matches without a victory and this was their fifth straight defeat. "Beyond the fact that this is a sad day because we go down to the second division, it's also sad because of the result, we went down in the worst way possible," said Jemez."We are as sad as (the fans), we didn't want this moment to arrive but we will keep working because there are still a lot of things to fight for and we must be responsible with the image of the club." Alaves' triumph confirms their safety, sitting 13th with 41 points from 34 games, an impressive feat masterminded by Abelardo Fernandez who took over in December with the Basque side bottom of the table. Malaga beat Real Sociedad 2-0 and Espanyol won 2-0 at Girona to damage their Catalan rivals’ dreams of finishing in a Europa League spot. The result left Girona ninth and Espanyol 16th in the standings, 11 points clear of the relegation zone.RESULTS:Girona 0 Espanyol 2 (Gerard Moreno 43, 55)Malaga 2 (Adrian 11, En-Nesyri 35) Real Sociedad 0Las Palmas 0 Alaves 4 (Munir 51, 73, Medran 79, Sobrino 90+1)Atletico Madrid 0 Real Betis 0La Liga table after Sunday's matches (played, won, drawn, lost, goals for, goals against, points): Barcelona              33 25  8  0 83 19 83 Atletico Madrid        34 21  9  4 54 18 72 Real Madrid            33 20  8  5 80 36 68 Valencia               34 20  6  8 62 36 66 ------------------------------------------- Real Betis             34 17  5 12 54 53 56 ------------------------------------------- Villarreal             33 15  6 12 45 40 51 ------------------------------------------- Sevilla                33 14  6 13 41 52 48 Getafe                 34 13  9 12 39 31 48 Girona                 34 13  8 13 46 52 47 Celta Vigo             34 12  9 13 53 47 45 Real Sociedad          34 12  7 15 60 54 43 Eibar                  34 12  7 15 37 47 43 Alaves                 34 13  2 19 34 47 41 Athletic Bilbao        33  9 13 11 36 39 40 Leganes                34 11  7 16 28 41 40 Espanyol               34  9 12 13 28 40 39 Levante                33  7 13 13 29 48 34 ------------------------------------------- Deportivo La Coruna    34  6 10 18 32 65 28 Las Palmas             34  5  6 23 22 69 21 -- relegated Malaga                 34  5  5 24 22 51 20 -- relegated Top four teams qualify for 2018-19 Champions League Fifth-placed team qualifies for 2018-19 Europa League group stage Sixth-placed team qualifies for 2018-19 Europa League qualifying Bottom three teams relegated to second-tier Segunda Division
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