Malaga salvage Osasuna draw

Misfiring Malaga maintain sixth place in Spain's Primera Division with a 1-1 draw against Osasuna.

    Malaga dominated the match from start to finish and were unlucky to finish with a draw [AFP]

    Malaga salvaged a 1-1 home draw against Osasuna on Sunday to maintain their place among Spain's Europa League contenders.

    Malaga created more scoring chances throughout at La Rosaleda stadium, with former Osasuna defender Nacho Monreal coming close in the 32nd with a volley that hit the post.

    Osasuna forward Ibrahima Balde grabbed the opener a minute later when he pounced on a loose ball inside the six-yard box.

    Malaga pressed forward after half-time, and substitute Juanmi Jimenez strode in unmarked at the far post to convert Sergio Sanchez's cross in the 70th to split the points.

    The draw kept Manuel Pellegrini's team in sixth place, behind Sevilla on goal difference, and two points ahead of Osasuna.

    Sporting win

    Earlier, struggling Sporting Gijon won 3-1 at Rayo Vallecano, and 10-man Real Sociedad drew 1-1 at Villarreal to extend their unbeaten run to four games.

    Sporting striker David Barral was quick to pounce on a poor clearance by the Rayo defence to score his sixth goal of the season 10 minutes in.

    Former Rangers forward Nacho Novo then put the result beyond doubt with a pair of goals in the 37th and the 67th as Sporting got their first win in three games.

    "We were able to put the fear in Rayo,'' Sporting coach Manolo Preciado said.

    "We knew that we could hurt Rayo with our speed and we succeeded in doing so.''

    Miguel "Michu'' Perez scored a consolation goal in added time for Rayo, who have lost four straight games after a solid start to the season.

    At El Madrigal stadium, Villarreal were the better team in the first half, but Sociedad held firm in defence before going ahead through Mikel Aranburu's 52nd-minute goal.

    The Basque midfielder received the ball on the left flank, cut back across the defence and fired the ball into the right side of the net.

    Sociedad were left with 10 men from the 62nd when Gorka Elustondo received his second booking.

    Striker Marco Ruben tapped in substitute Joselu Moreno's cross to equalise for Villarreal in the 72nd.

    Undefeated

    Also, Getafe remained undefeated in their last six home games as they edged Granada 1-0 thanks to Javier Casquero's 78th-minute blast from outside the area.

    Mallorca got their first away win of the season as they beat last-place Zaragoza 1-0 thanks to Victor Casadesus' first-half goal.

    Barcelona overcame an early goal to beat Real Madrid 3-1 on Saturday to move top of the table.

    Barcelona are ahead of their fierce rivals on goal difference, although Madrid have a game in hand.

    Also, Levante edged Sevilla 1-0 to remain in pull to within one-point of third-place Valencia, who lost 2-1 at Real Betis after two stoppage-time goals by Ruben Castro.

    SOURCE: AP


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