Villarreal bounced back from their midweek Europa League nightmare to defeat struggling Getafe 2-1 and claim a much-needed victory in their quest for a top-four finish in the Primera Division.
Three days after losing the first leg of their European semi-final to Porto 5-1, stuttering Villarreal - who had won just three of their previous 12 league games, losing six - looked set for more misery as they trailed 1-0 to a stunning Pedro Rios strike at half-time.
However, the Yellow Submarine got themselves back on terms in the 61st minute through Cani and record goalscorer Giuseppe Rossi headed in the winner in the 74th minute.
Osasuna pulled themselves out of the relegation zone with a deserved 1-0 win over an oddly lacklustre Valencia.
The hosts were by far the better team in the opening stages and, though they could not maintain their high level all the way through, Alvaro Cejudo's shot deflected off Marius Stankevicius after 59 minutes to hand them three vital points. The victory takes them out of the drop zone, with Getafe replacing them in the bottom three.
Julio Baptista scored twice as Malaga came from behind to beat 10-man Hercules 3-1 and boost their chances of survival.
Nelson Haedo Valdez gave struggling Hercules the lead after just three minutes, but Baptista hit back straight away and secured victory with a late header, moments after Salomon Rondon had made it 2-1.
Sevilla boosted their chances of Europa League qualification and left Almeria on the brink of relegation following a hard-fought 1-0 win over their Andalusian rivals.
Renato scored the only goal of a tight game 12 minutes into the second half after Almeria had been reduced to 10 men after Danish full-back Michael Jakobsen had been sent off just four minutes earlier.
Racing Santander took a giant step towards survival with a 2-0 victory over Real Mallorca. Markus Rosenberg put the hosts in front and, after Ivan Ramis had a penalty saved by Antonio Tono, Kennedy Bakircioglu completed the scoring.
Levante and Sporting Gijon played out an uninspiring goalless draw at the Ciutat de Valencia that sees both teams take a step closer to Primera Division.