Real Madrid miss chance to go top as snow affects Spain's Matchday 18
Jan 11, 2021
Madrid (Spain) Jan 11: Storm Filamena played its role in the 18th round of matches in La Liga as Real Madrid missed a chance to go top of the table on Saturday.
Heavy snow of over 50 centimeters made it impossible for league leaders Atletico Madrid to entertain Athletic Club Bilbao, whose plane was unable to land at Madrid airport, and the pitch at Atletico's Wanda Metropolitano Stadium was also unplayable under a deep blanket of snow.
That meant a win for Real Madrid away to Osasuna would have taken them top of the table.
However, the Madrid expedition was beset with problems, with their flight delayed for three hours on Friday night due to a frozen runway.
The pitch in Osasuna's El Sadar had been kept playable by a team of 40 workers, although it snowed before, during, and after a game that Zinedine Zidane's side controlled while creating few chances.
After the final whistle, Zidane complained the game should not have gone ahead, although midfielder Tony Kroos disagreed, arguing that conditions were the same for both teams.
FC Barcelona, meanwhile, had no weather issues to contend with in Granada, where two goals each from Leo Messi and Antoine Griezmann gave them their third away win in a week to move up to third place in the table.
After Marc Andre TerStegen made a great save from Antonio Puertas in just the second minute of the game, Barca took control with Griezmann opening the scoring following Roberto Soldado's mishit clearance and Messi doubled the lead with a trademark left-foot shot in the 34th minute before netting his second from a free-kick four minutes before halftime.
Griezmann's quick feet helped him net a second in the second half and Granada's misery was complete when Jesus Vallejo was sent off 12 minutes from time.
There was bright sunshine in Seville where Yousef En-Nesyri scored a hat-trick in Sevilla's 3-2 victory at home to Real Sociedad.
It was 2-2 after just 14 minutes as the Moroccan scored twice in the first six minutes only for a Diego Carlos own goal and Alexander Isak twice pulled Real Sociedad (who have only one win in 11 games) level, but En-Nesyri's quick movement saw him score what would be the winner in the first minute of the second half.
With Getafe's trip to Elche postponed 24 hours due to the weather, there were only three games on Sunday.
Goals from Gonzalo Melero after 65 minutes and a tap in from Jose Luis Morales following a break 10 minutes later saw Levante come back from a goal down at home to Eibar after Takashi Inui had put the visitors in front 10 minutes into the second half.
Cadiz overcame 10-man Alaves to claim just their second home win of the season. Alex Fernandez opened the scoring from close range in the 14th minute, and although Joselu equalized from the penalty spot eight minutes later, Alves was reduced to 10 men after Alberto Rodriguez was sent off in the 49th minute allowing Lozano and Alvaro Negredo to seal a 3-1 win for Cadiz.
Carlos Soler's 76th-minute goal saw Valencia win 1-0 away to Valladolid to give under pressure Valencia coach JaviGracia an important boost following his side's 4-1 Copa del Rey win away to Yeclano in midweek.