Valencia's Nelson Valdez came off the bench to snatch a last-gasp 1-0 win at Celta Vigo in La Liga on Saturday and give his side a morale boost before they play Paris St Germain in the Champions League.
Celta held Ernesto Valverde's side at bay until the third minute of added time when Joao Pereira floated a cross to the back post and Valdez, who had only been on the pitch a few minutes, nodded powerfully past Javi Varas.
The victory came at a cost, however, as Valencia lost Aly Cissokho to injury when the fullback went over awkwardly on an ankle and had to be replaced towards the end of the first half.
Valencia, who host PSG in their last 16 first leg on Tuesday, temporarily bounced up to fourth on 37 points from 23 games, but that only lasted a couple of hours. Malaga stole the Champions League spot back after defeating Levante 2-1.
Isco scoring twice for Malaga after Jose Javier Barkero had given Levante the lead with a 27th minute penalty.
Stuttering champions Real Madrid can trim the gap with second-placed city rivals Atletico to four points with a win at home to Sevilla (2100GMT).
Atletico visit Rayo Vallecano on Sunday (2000) after Barcelona, who are nine points clear at the top, host Getafe (1100).
Real Mallorca's new coach Gregorio Manzano, appointed this week to replace the sacked Joaquin Caparros, began his third stint at the Balearic Islands club with a 1-1 home draw against fellow strugglers Osasuna.
Osasuna midfielder Lolo headed in from a corner in the 77th minute but Pedro Geromel equalised in added time to leave Mallorca in 19th place on 18 points.
Osasuna are 17th on 22 points, two ahead of Celta in 18th.