Atlético Madrid gets back near the top in Spanish La Liga
- Thomas Lemar, Ángel Correa and Matheus Cunha also scored after halftime for Atlético as it rebounded from a surprising home loss to AC Milan that left it in danger of elimination from the Champions League.
Atlético Madrid got the goals flowing in the second half, with Antoine Griezmann among the scorers in a 4-1 win at Cádiz that moved the team to second place in the Spanish league.
Thomas Lemar, Ángel Correa and Matheus Cunha also scored after halftime for Atlético as it rebounded from a surprising home loss to AC Milan that left it in danger of elimination from the Champions League.
Diego Simeone's team had won only one of its last four matches in all competitions.
The league victory at Cádiz gave Atlético 29 points from 14 matches, one point less than Real Madrid ahead of the rival's home match against Sevilla later Sunday.
After a slow start, Atlético secured the three points in southern Spain by scoring three goals in a 20-minute span.
Lemar broke the deadlock in the 56th, then Griezmann scored in the 70th and Correa in the 76th. Cunha added a fourth in the 86th, after Cádiz had pulled one closer in a rare own-goal by Atlético goalkeeper Jan Oblak, who couldn't swat away a high lob shot that went across the area and over his head.
“We have to try to keep improving,” Simeone said. “It was important to win this match so we could stay on the right path in the league.”
It was the second consecutive loss for Cádiz, which has won only once in its last 10 league matches. It's 17th in the league, just outside the relegation zone.
SOCIEDAD LOSES AGAIN
After having its 17-match unbeaten streak ended by Monaco in the Europa League on Thursday, Real Sociedad lost 1-0 at Espanyol to miss an opportunity to stay at the top.
The result dropped Sociedad to third place, one point off the lead.
Yangel Herrera scored in the 77th for Espanyol, which moved to ninth place.
Sociedad had a controversial second-half goal by Alexander Isak disallowed because the ball touched the referee in the buildup.
Manuel Pellegrini’s Real Betis stayed close to the Champions League spots with a 3-1 home win over last-place Levante, with forward Juanmi Jiménez scoring all three goals for the hosts in the second half.
Levante, which took an early lead with a goal from Shkodran Mustafi, is the only team without a win after 15 league matches. Its winless streak in the competition is now at 23 games, dating back to last season.
Betis is fifth with 27 points.