Leaders Barcelona defeated bottom team Elche 4-0 on Saturday to go ahead of Real Madrid in second place in La Liga by a provisional margin of 15 points. Robert Lewandowski scored twice in the victory. Real will have to beat Valladolid late on Sunday to keep their slender hopes alive while the Catalan team moves closer to winning their 27th La Liga championship.
After three league games without a goal, La Liga’s leading scorer Lewandowski scored his first league goal in the 20th minute with a close-range finish after Ronald Araujo headed the ball down to him in front of the plane.
Lewandowski double helps Barcelona thrash Elche
Ansu Fati extended the advantage in the 55th minute by receiving a pass from Ferran Torres in his half, cutting inside to the outside of the box, and hitting low into the far corner for his first league goal since October. In the 65th minute, Gavi successfully used Barcelona’s customary high pressing to steal the ball from the Elche defense and set up Lewandowski in the area for an easy second goal of the game.
In the 70th minute, Torres scored his third league goal of the season, slipping his effort into the left corner. Also, Elche is 14 points outside the safety zone and on the verge of being relegated with 13 points from 27 games.
In his first game in charge, new Sevilla coach Jose Luis Mendilibar earned an important 2-0 victory over Cadiz thanks to goals from Lucas Ocampos and Youssef En-Nesyri. Mendilibar replaced Jorge Sampaoli during the interval. His squad triumphed on the road in La Liga for the first time since October by putting on a return-to-basics performance to move into the midtable.
In a close first half that the hosts edged, Sevilla struggled to generate opportunities, but Ocampos scored soon after the interval on a corner kick rebound. Bryan Gil cushioned the ball into En-Nesyri’s path with a great touch, allowing him to finish well and increase his team’s advantage. Sevilla moved to 13th place, five points clear of the drop zone.