Atletico Madrid routs Betis to keep pace with Barcelona; Spain roundup
BARCELONA, Spain (AP) - Promising teenager Oliver Torres scored 13 seconds into his first start for Atletico Madrid on Sunday before veteran David Villa added a brace in its 5-0 rout of Real Betis, keeping the team pegged one point behind Spanish leader Barcelona.
Oliver connected with a squared ball from Jorge ''Koke'' Resurreccion that took a deflection off Betis defender Jordi Figueras before falling for him to fire home just moments after the opening whistle at Vicente Calderon Stadium.
It was an ideal start for the 18-year-old midfielder making his first appearance in Atletico's starting 11. Minutes later, he almost assisted Diego Godin, who headed his pass past the upright.
Oliver is considered one of the league's most gifted up-and-coming players for his playmaking abilities. He debuted for Atletico in 2012, the same year he helped Spain's under-19 team win the European championships.
The 31-year-old Villa, Spain's all-time leading scorer, ended his month-long scoring drought with a much-needed double after being overshadowed by strike partner Diego Costa since his move from Barcelona this summer.
Having gotten his pair of goals, Villa capped his best performance for Atletico by passing for Diego Costa to notch his league-leading 11th goal of the season.
Also, Mexico forward Giovani Dos Santos scored two goals and set up the opener as Villarreal rolled past Valencia 4-1 to strengthen its hold on fourth place.
Real Sociedad took out some of the frustration from its loss at Manchester United in the Champions League this week by beating up on last-place Almeria 3-0, while Sevilla edged 10-man Osasuna 2-1 for a third win in as many rounds.
Betis goalkeeper Guillermo Sara was injured while stretching to save Diego Costa's try in first-half stoppage time.
Backup Stephan Andersen replaced him but could do nothing in the 53rd to stop Villa's glancing header to angle Filipe Luis's cross down and inside the far post.
Villa hit again four minutes later when he finished off a counterattack with Betis completely off-balance. He then expertly controlled a long pass before playing Diego Costa through to roll the ball in for the fourth goal in the 65th.
Atletico's Gabi Fernandez rounded out the thrashing in injury time.
Villarreal's home victory in the regional derby lifted the promoted side to within two points of third-place Real Madrid after it lost 2-1 at Barcelona on Saturday.
Dos Santos leads Villarreal with six goals through 10 rounds. That makes him the fourth leading scorer in Spain's first division after Diego Costa and Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo with eight apiece.
''We should be very satisfied and pleased with the performance of our players,'' said Villarreal coach Marcelino Garcia. ''We are a humble club that took it at a Valencia side fighting to be in the Champions League. Besides, we played some good football tonight.''
Dos Santos crossed for striker Ikechuwku Uche to steer the ball in at the far post and get Villarreal started in the 17th minute. Hernan Perez made it 2-0 five minutes later.
Dos Santos hit the post and had a penalty saved by goalkeeper Vicente Guita after Jeremy Mathieu tripped Uche in the area, but he made up for his missed spot kick with a deft flick with his back to the net to score from the resulting corner kick in the 49th.
After Ricardo Costa headed in Valencia's lone goal in the 63rd, Dos Santos polished off his outstanding performance with a long left-footed strike to beat Guaita in the 84th.
Sociedad forward Antoine Griezmann scored two headers in the 13th and 50th to fuel Sociedad's attack, while left back Jose Angel set up the second of those opening goals before adding a third of his own in the 55th.
Sociedad got its first victory at Anoeta Stadium since round one.
Almeria remained the only team in the top flight yet to win a match this season and with just three of a possible 30 points.
Sevilla's Ivan Rakitic scored in the 55th and Jairo Samperio extended the lead in the 75th after Osasuna had Damia Abella dismissed in the 34th with a red card for for pulling down Kevin Gameiro from behind with only the goalkeeper to beat.
Oriol Riera got Osasuna's consolation goal three minutes from time.