Two eye-catching games took place on Friday 30th August as early table-toppers Seville host Celta Vigo whilst Athletic Bilbao with their own designs on top spot hosted perennial mid-table outfit Real Sociedad.
Here’s what happened…
Sevilla 1 Celta Vigo 1
Sevilla head coach Julen Lopetegui will view this as a missed opportunity as a former Barcelona man came back to haunt the former Real Madrid manager with a late equalizer to see his side knocked off top spot after three games.
The first half gave little to write home about with the home side as expected edging the contest.
However, as the game continued in the second half, it was clear Sevilla were frustrated in their own inability to break Celta down.
That was until the 81st minute when Franco Vazquez finally broke the deadlock to send the Ramón Sánchez Pizjuán into raptures with the belief that Los Hispalenses had made it three from three.
But (there is always a but), Vigo had a different idea and just three-minutes later former Barcelona and Arsenal midfielder repaid some of his 16-million-euro fee with a strike to level the game and earn his side a surprise point in Sevilla.
Athletic Bilbao 2 Real Sociedad 0
Sevilla’s inability to overcome Celta Vigo was to Athletic Bilbao’s gain as Gaizka Garitano’s men leapfrogged the Sevillistas into top spot (albeit pretty much based on alphabetical order) in La Liga.
A 2-0 home win over great rivals Real Sociedad was fairly routine to the delight of the majority of the 50,000 packed into the San Mamés.
The tie was settled in first half thanks to an 11th goal from Inaki Williams and a 28th minute strike from Raul Garcia.
The win for the Basque club leaves them at the summit of La Liga after Saturday’s round of games and Real Sociedad in the familiar position of 11th.
Barcelona Stunned on Saturday
Many (including us) expected Barcelona to give newly promoted Osasuna a harsh lesson in what it takes to make it in Spain’s top flight.
However, if anything, quite the opposite transpired as Osasuna stunned the 26-time La Liga champions as Roberto Torres netted for the home side.
It took until the 51st minute before Barcelona levelled through 16-year-old Anssumane Fati and when Arthur put the visitors ahead 13 minutes later, it looked like the expected win would occur.
That was until Torres upset the applecart again with a penalty in the 81st minute to ensure Osasuna claimed a valuable and unexpected point against the defending champions.