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La Liga Wrap: Barcelona celebrate title with victory, Celta Vigo lose
May 12, 2013 11:12 PM GMT
La Liga champions Barcelona came from behind to beat Atletico Madrid, while Valencia moved into fourth with a 4-0 win at Rayo Vallecano.
The Catalan side's 22nd title was confirmed before a ball had even been kicked at the Vicente Calderon after Real Madrid were held to a 1-1 draw at Espanyol on Saturday.
Lionel Messi returned to the starting line-up following his hamstring problem but picked up an injury in the 70th minute after Tito Vilanova had already made three substitutions - leaving the visitors with ten men and trailing 1-0 to Radamel Falcao's strike.
However, this did not seem to matter as the newly-crowned champions fought back with a goal from Alexis Sanchez, before David Villa's scuffed effort deflected into the back of the net off Gabi's leg to seal the three points.
Meanwhile, Valencia climbed into the final UEFA Champions League qualifying spot ahead of Real Sociedad's game against Granada on Monday.
Roberto Soldado netted from the penalty spot in the 28th minute, after Daniel Parejo was felled in the area by Roberto Trashorras, before tapping in an Andres Guardado cross six minutes later.
Guardado fired home Valencia’s third in the 62nd minute and Nelson Valdez capped off a strong performance for the visitors with a thumping effort deep into injury-time.
Malaga have remained in the top six despite being held to a goalless draw with Sevilla at La Rosaleda.
The best chance of the game fell the way of Ivan Rakitic, but the Croatian somehow headed wide from Alvaro Negredo's cross in the 77th minute.
Elsewhere, Celta Vigo missed the chance to move out of the relegation zone as they were beaten 1-0 by Real Betis at the Estadio Benito Villamarin.
The home side had plenty of chances in the first half, with Ruben Castro and Nosa Igiebor both having efforts disallowed for offside.
Castro eventually broke the deadlock in the 68th minute with a powerful strike from close range, before he saw a header hit the post just eight minutes later.
The result leaves Celta 19th in the table and three points adrift of safety with just two La Liga fixtures remaining compared to their rivals' three.