Real Madrid get needed win vs. La Real; Sevilla beat Girona to go second
Real Madrid picked up a needed win at Anoeta on Sunday, seeing off Real Sociedad 3-1 in La Liga in a game that saw Gareth Bale get back on the scoresheet.
Zinedine Zidane's team, who were coming off a pair of home draws in the league, were on the scoreboard just before the 20-minute mark. Sergio Ramos did well to hold up the ball in the penalty area as he was being pulled down from behind and Borja Mayoral swept in to volley home for his first official career Real Madrid goal to make it 1-0 in favour of the visitors.
But Kevin Rodrigues would have La Real, who entered the weekend tied for first with Barcelona, back on level terms before the half-hour, connecting on a nice first-time volley from a Alvaro Odriozola cross that Keylor Navas might have done better to keep out.
Real wasted no time getting back in front, with Mayoral's cross after a long run from midfield redirected into the back of the Sociedad net by goal-scorer Rodrigues.
Bale, who has been hearing whistles from the Real faithful of late, doubled his team's advantage just after the hour mark, running down an Isco pass over the top of the Sociedad defence, taking one touch and then chipping into the back of the net with a deft touch from his left boot.
The win pulls Real back into the top-four in La Liga -- one point behind their beaten opponent on the day -- ahead of a midweek clash with Betis at the Bernabeu.
Luis Muriel's second-half goal proved the difference as Sevilla moved two points behind league leaders Barcelona by edging to a 1-0 win at Girona.
Muriel latched onto Franco Vazquez's through ball and beat Girona goalkeeper Gorka Iraizoz at his near post with a left-footed finish in the 69th minute.
The hosts had an opportunity to secure a point but Alex Granell saw his penalty one minute into injury-time rattle the crossbar and Sevilla clung on to claim their third successive league win.
Loic Remy struck three minutes from time to lift Las Palmas to a 1-0 win over Athletic Bilbao.
Remy, who joined the club on Sept. 1 after being released by Chelsea, scored on his Las Palmas debut in the victory at Malaga earlier this week.
And he came off the bench to grab the winner on Sunday, cutting in from the left and firing beyond Kepa Arrizabalaga to hand Athletic their first defeat in four matches.
Cedric Bakambu scored two goals as Villarreal claimed a comfortable 3-0 victory over struggling Alaves in Sunday's early kick-off at Mendizorrotza.
The Congolese striker fired Victor Ruiz's assist into the bottom corner just after the half-hour mark and Carlos Bacca added a close-range second seven minutes after the break.
Bakambu, who was also on target in Thursday night's 3-1 Europa League victory over Astana, completed his double 10 minutes later thanks to Samu Castillejo's well-placed through-ball to hand the Yellow Submarine their second successive league victory.
The result means a fourth straight defeat for Alaves, who sacked manager Luis Zubeldia after the match with the team having no points or goals scored in their start to the league.
Alaves said that Javier Cabello would be interim manager.