La Liga Review: Espanyol leapfrog Betis into top half

Getty Images

Espanyol inflicted Real Betis' second home defeat of the La Liga season on Saturday, moving above them on the table thanks to a 3-1 win.

Chilean defender Enzo Roco got the visitors off to a great start at Estadio Benito Villamarin, heading home his second goal of the season inside four minutes.

Joaquin rattled the post with a first-half free-kick but, soon after the interval, Espanyol increased their lead as Felipe Caicedo capped a fine counter-attacking move.

Victor Sanchez scored the third for Sergio's men, firing home from inside the box from a Marco Asencio cutback.

Vincenzo Rennella netted a consolation goal for the hosts with a minute remaining in normal time. 

The results leaves Espanyol ninth, one point and one place above their beaten hosts. 
Real Madrid, at least for now, moved to the top of the table with Marcelo, Cristiano Ronaldo and Jese Rodriguez on target in a 3-0 win at home to Levante. Ronaldo's effort made him Madrid's all-time leading goal-scorer with 324 strikes.

Neymar scored four against Rayo Vallecano, two of which came from the penalty spot, to see Barcelona join Rafael Benitez's men on 18 points - second only on goal difference - with Luis Suarez also finding the net in a 5-2 win at Camp Nou.

Eibar were held to a 1-1 draw at home to Sevilla with Kevin Gameiro's second-half goal cancelling out a Borja Baston opener.

That loss of points enabled Valencia to move closer to the European places.

They were 3-0 winners against Malaga - for whom Duda failed to convert a first-half penalty - at Estadio Mestalla, with Dani Parejo's late penalty adding to a Charles own-goal and an Andre Gomes strike.