Atletico Madrid beat Alaves 2-1 at home on Saturday in La Liga to maintain their superb run of form since the season resumed, recording a fourth consecutive win to further tighten their hold on third place. Midfielder Saul Niguez broke the deadlock by heading home a pin-point free kick from Kieran Trippier in the 59th minute, while Diego Costa sent goalkeeper Fernando Pacheco the wrong way from the penalty spot to double their lead in the 73rd. The hosts had to endure an uncomfortable end to the match though as visiting forward Joselu scored a penalty in added time. The penalty was awarded for a handball by Atletico captain Koke, who will miss next week's trip to Barcelona through suspension after earning a booking for the incident. Atletico are third in the standings on 58 points after 32 games, with the win extending their advantage over fourth-placed Sevilla by four points and increasing their gap with fifth-placed Getafe by nine. Alaves, who slumped to a third straight defeat, are 15th on 35 points, nine above the relegation zone. "It was a really hard-fought game, Alaves sat very deep and it was very hard for us to get near their goal or down the wing but we got the breakthrough from a set play then they opened up and our subs caused them damage," said goalscorer Saul. "I can sleep easily because the team is in very good form, we all worked hard in our homes during lockdown and after it and that has made the difference between us and our rivals." The match was also a landmark win for coach Diego Simeone, who became the club's most successful manager with 195 La Liga victories, overtaking the late Luis Aragones who previously held the record with 194 wins in the top-flight.
Football LA LIGA