La Liga Roundup, Gameweek 38: Atletico Madrid Are Worthy Spanish Champions


Atletico Madrid won the Spanish Primera title on the final day of the season with a 1-1 draw at Barcelona. At the other end of the table, Osasuna and Real Valladolid were relegated and will join Real Betis in La Segunda. 

Atletico Madrid won their first La Liga title since 1996 after drawing 1-1 with Barcelona in the championship decider at Camp Nou. Diego Simeone was dealt two major blows early on when top scorer Diego Costa limped off and winger Arda Turan soon joined him on the sidelines. Barcelona had the better of the first-half and Alexis Sanchez fired them ahead from a seemingly impossible angle after Lionel Messi’s knock-down. Atleti bounced back when Diego Godin rose to head Koke’s corner beyond Jose Manuel Pinto and the draw was enough to hand Atleti the title.

Real Madrid finished third and ended an anti-climactic season with a 3-1 victory over Espanyol at the Santiago Bernabeu. After a goalless first half, Gareth Bale put Los Blancos ahead on 64 minutes and Alvaro Morata made the points safe four minutes from time. Pizzi pulled one back for the Catalans before Morata hit his second in stoppage time. Victory was tempered by doubts over Cristiano Ronaldo’s fitness ahead of the Champions League final. The Portuguese pulled out of the game moments before kick-off and was replaced by Isco.

Sevilla toasted their Europa League triumph with an emphatic 3-1 win over Elche, rounding off the campaign in style at the Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan. Midfielder Vicente Iborra tripled his goal tally for the season by opening the scoring for Sevilla and then adding a brilliant third, with Jairo Samperio also getting on the scoresheet on a comfortable night for Unai Emery’s side. Richmond Boakye grabbed a consolation for the visitors in injury time. 

Villarreal claimed a 2-1 victory over Real Sociedad at Anoeta to finish above the Basques in sixth place. Giovani dos Santos gave the visitors a deserved lead with a fine curling finish after 26 minutes and later provided Ikechukwu Uche with the pass for the second goal on 69 minutes to kill off the game. Carlos Vela pulled a goal back for the hosts in the final minute of stoppage time, but there was no time to find an equaliser.

Valencia marked the beginning of a new era at Mestalla with a 2-1 comeback win over Celta Vigo after Singapore billionaire Peter Lim completed his takeover of the club. Debt-laden Los Che welcomed the tycoon’s decision with a battling victory at the end of a disappointing season. The northerners looked set to spoil Valencia’s party when Inigo Lopez gave them a fifth-minute lead but Los Che fought back for the win with goals either side of half-time from Sofiane Feghouli and Pablo Piatti. Valencia finish eighth, level on points with ninth-placed Celta. 

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