MADRID - Barcelona blew a two-goal lead
to draw 2-2 at Real Sociedad and Real Madrid took advantage of
the slip-up with a 4-2 home win over Getafe in La Liga on
European champions Barca were cruising after early strikes
from Xavi and Cesc Fabregas but they eased off and the Basques
levelled with two goals in three second-half minutes.
France striker Karim Benzema led Real to victory, scoring
either side of a disputed Cristiano Ronaldo penalty, but it
needed substitute Gonzalo Higuain to settle the match for Jose
Real have a perfect six points, the same as Valencia who
were 1-0 winners at home to Atletico Madrid.
Barca have four points along with Sociedad and Sevilla who
grabbed a 2-2 draw at 10-man Villarreal.
Roberto Soldado powered a header in off the bar for Valencia
in the 52nd minute and tops the scoring charts with Ronaldo, on
four goals from two games.
Villarreal had goalkeeper Diego Lopez harshly sent off after
22 minutes at the Madrigal and Alvaro Negredo saw his penalty
saved but scored on the rebound to put Sevilla ahead.
Giuseppe Rossi levelled with a penalty at the other end and
Marco Ruben fired Villarreal ahead in the 73rd before Alexis
Ruano headed a late equaliser.
MESSI ON BENCH
Perhaps with the midweek Champions League fixture against AC
Milan in mind, Barca coach Pep Guardiola left Lionel Messi,
David Villa and Andres Iniesta on the bench and at first they
were not missed.
Fabregas dinked a ball over the top for Xavi to score in the
10th minute and the former Arsenal player also set up Pedro a
minute later, putting away the rebound when the latter's shot
Barca lost new signing Alexis Sanchez to a thigh injury,
which could keep the Chilean sidelined for up to eight weeks,
and the game began to get away from them in the 59th minute.
Striker Imanol Agirretxe headed one back for the home side
and almost immediately the same player intercepted a poor back
pass from Villa and fired against the bar.
Antoine Griezmann followed up to head into the open net,
however, and Barca were lucky not to lose Sergio Busquets who
had tipped Agirretxe's original shot on to the woodwork with his
Guardiola threw Messi and Iniesta into the fray but it was a
despairing last-minute defensive header from Dani Alves that
denied the hosts a shock winner.
"It was two defensive errors... that have proved very
expensive," Barca captain Xavi told Spanish television.
NOT A PENALTY
Benzema fired Real ahead at the Bernabeu after a slick
passing move in the 14th minute and after Miku had levelled for
Getafe just before the break, Ronaldo tumbled on the edge of the
area in the 60th.
The referee signalled a penalty which the Portuguese forward
scored, though television replays showed the incident occurred
outside the area.
"Being totally objective it was not a penalty," Mourinho
Benzema scored from a Ronaldo cross in the 69th but Miku
unsettled Real again with a cool finish in the 73rd and it took
a late goal from Higuain to make sure of the points.
"I didn't like the way my team played. We could have scored
seven or eight because we made a lot of chances but we let them
play and Getafe were very well organised," Mourinho said.
"I like it when my team play well and in a compact way and
today was not like that."
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