HUELVA, February 3 (Primera Liga) - Luis Fabiano was again amongst the goals as Sevilla shrugged off a host of absentees and the first-half dismissal of Aquivaldo Mosquera to down Andalusian rivals Recreativo Huelva.
Luis Fabiano struck towards the end of each half to earn Sevilla all three points and see him go clear at the top of the scoring charts with 16 goals, two more than Real Zaragoza's Diego Milito.
Recreativo pulled a goal back late on through Beto, but by that stage the hosts had also been reduced to 10 men due to Ersen Martin's foul on Christian Poulsen - levelling up the numbers following Mosquera's 41st-minute red card for Sevilla.
Sevilla coach Manolo Jimenez had major selection concerns heading into the match, with Frederic Kanoute, Javi Navarro, Seydou Keita, Ernesto Chevanton, Jose Angel Crespo, Adriano, Jesus Navas and Arouna Kone all unavailable.
However, Sevilla made light of that and created much the better of the first-half chances, with Diego Capel bringing a save out of Stefano Sorrentino after getting a fortunate break of the ball, before Luis Fabiano sent a shot just wide after turning Iago Bouzon on the edge of the area.
The in-form Brazil international was then denied by Sorrentino before Sevilla suffered what could have been a major setback just before the break when Mosquera was shown his second yellow card for bringing down Aitor Tornavaca.
Recre almost took immediate advantage as Florent Sinama Pongolle broke into the area, but the Frenchman could only find the side-netting with his low shot.
Soon after that wasted opportunity Sevilla took the lead with a bit of magic from Luis Fabiano.
A long Poulsen ball towards the right corner flag was chased down by Luis Fabiano, who took one touch to cut inside his marker before neatly chipping the ball over the out-rushing Sorrentino and into the net.
After the break, Sinama Pongolle had another chance to test Andres Palop - back in the Sevilla goal after two months out injured - but last season's top scorer blazed horribly wide after being put clean through.
Despite being a man down, Sevilla still looked dangerous going forward and Dirnei Renato almost made it 2-0 in the 71st minute when he headed Capel's cross against the post.
Recre rallied and Javi Guerrero and Martin both had chances before the latter earned a straight red card for a crude challenge on Poulsen in the 81st minute.
Three minutes later Luis Fabiano made it 2-0 after being quickest to meet Daniel Alves' free-kick from the right and directing a header just inside the near post.
That proved to be a decisive strike as Recre reduced the deficit in the 89th minute when Beto met Jorge Carlos Martins' ball to head home unchallenged from six yards out.
Beto's goal set up a frantic finale, which almost saw Sevilla net a third goal after Recre custodian Sorrentino had gone up for a corner.
Sevilla broke quickly and had a two-on-one, but the visitors were not able to make the most of it as Luis Fabiano, having been pushed wide by an over-hit pass, saw his shot saved by Sorrentino, who had managed to get back.