Spanish Primera Liga

La Liga: Last-gasp Pique own goal costs Barca

October 31, 2009

League leaders Barcelona were denied victory in dramatic circumstances at Osasuna as Gerard Pique put through his own net deep into injury time to give the hosts an unexpected point.

Pep Guardiola despairs as Osasuna's bench celebrates their late leveller
GettyImages / Alvaro BarrientosPep Guardiola despairs as Osasuna's bench celebrates their late leveller

Pique was attempting to clear after a Rafa Marquez error had let in Javier Camunas, but the Spain defender could only divert the ball towards 'keeper Victor Valdes, who couldn't react in time to prevent the ball going into his net.

Before that, Seydou Keita's strike midway through the second half had looked enough to send the Catalans on their way to an eighth victory in nine league games but now they are only top of the table by a solitary point from Real Madrid.

Gonzalo Higuain struck both goals as 10-man Real Madrid produced a superb performance to see off local rivals Getafe and end a traumatic week on a high.

Madrid went into the match under huge pressure following Tuesday's humiliating 4-0 Copa del Rey loss at third tier Alcorcon - their third defeat in five games - and with Spanish media speculating that coach Manuel Pellegrini's job was on the line.

And when Madrid centre-back Raul Albiol was shown a straight red card in the 27th minute, it looked set to be another night of misery for the big-spending Spanish giants. But, as is often the case when a team goes a man down, the home side found a determination and commitment that saw them not only match Getafe but dominate most of the rest of the match.

Sevilla scored late in each half to see off struggling Xerez 2-0 in an intense Andalusian derby to return to winning ways. They were always the favourites to win this match against a Xerez side with only five points to their name from the first eight rounds of the championship.

The promoted side had only scored in two of those matches and missed chances again in this clash. And they were given a lesson in finishing by a clinical Sevilla side, who took the points thanks to goals from Alvaro Negredo and Luis Fabiano late in each half.

Atletico Madrid's woeful season continued as new manager Quique Sanchez Flores watched them lose flatly against Athletic Bilbao at San Mames.

Fourth from bottom with just one win in the league so far this season going into the game, Sanchez Flores was looking for improvement after replacing the sacked Abel Resino. However, Javi Martinez's first-half header ensured they left the Basque Country empty-handed with the home side moving back up to seventh in La Liga.