Published March 02, 2013
| Sports Network
Madrid, Spain – Real Madrid claimed a 2-1 win over Barcelona in the latest installment of El Clasico on Saturday, its second defeat of the Catalan club in five days.
Madrid ousted Barcelona from Copa del Rey contention on Tuesday with a 3-1 victory at Camp Nou, and the Merengues followed it up in ideal fashion as Karim Benzema and Sergio Ramos led the home side to all three points.
Real Madrid took an early lead in just the sixth minute of play as Benzema got on the end of Alvaro Morata's cross to the back post and tucked home the delivery with a first-time effort.
But the advantage lasted just 12 minutes as Lionel Messi latched on to a through ball to unlock the Real Madrid defense. The Argentine cut the ball back onto his left foot and used Ramos as a shield to fire a low shot past Diego Lopez at the near post.
Madrid came within inches of restoring its one-goal lead in the 76th minute when Morata was one-on-one with Victor Valdes, but the Real starlet was denied by the torso of the Barcelona 'keeper.
The go-ahead goal eventually came, albeit from an unlikely source. Ramos rose above his mark to meet an 82nd-minute corner kick and guide his header into the far upper corner.
Real held on to the one-goal lead to close out the match and improve to 55 points on the season.
Barcelona, which saw Valdes receive a red card following the final whistle for berating the officiating crew, remains atop the La Liga table with 68 points.
Valencia 2, Levante 2
Valencia, Spain - Jose Barkero helped Levante collect a point in dramatic fashion, netting an 89th-minute equalizer in a 2-2 draw with Valencia at the Mestalla on Saturday.
Vicente Iborra put visiting Levante in front after 16 minutes, but Valencia took the lead by halftime thanks to Jonas and Roberto Soldado. The home side looked destined to take all three points in the Valencia derby, but Barkero spoiled that notion when got Levante on level terms at the death.
Valencia improves to 42 points to go level with Malaga while Levante moves to 35 points on the season.
Deportivo 0, Rayo Vallecano 0
Madrid, Spain - Deportivo and Rayo Vallecano failed to produce a score in the Madrid derby at the Riazor on Saturday as the two sides played to a 0-0 draw.
The home side was reduced to 10 men when Carlos Marchena was sent off in the 85th minute, but Rayo was left minimal time to take advantage of the extra man.
Deportivo remains bottom of La Liga on 17 points while Rayo continues to push for a European qualification spot with 38 points.
Athletic Bilbao 1, Osasuna 0
Navarra, Spain - Market Susaeta notched the lone goal in Athletic Bilbao's 1-0 defeat of Osasuna at El Sadar on Saturday.
The goal, which came in the 63rd minute, sees Bilbao snap a three-game losing streak to improve to 29 points on the season, lifting the club one point clear of Osasuna.