Wednesday, 24 December 2014
La Liga Team of the Week: Messi and Griezmann shine
The 16th round of La Liga saw Barcelona and Atletico both record vital victories and close in on leaders Real Madrid, who lifted the Club World Cup in Morocco.
Barca thrashed Cordoba 5-0 at Camp Nou, while Atletico came from behind to beat Athletic Bilbao 4-1 at San Mames.
Elsewhere, there wins for Almeria, Valencia, Espanyol, Villarreal and Malaga. Here, Goal picks the standout performers from the 16th round of La Liga.
In goal, Julian made a number of fine saves to help lowly Almeria seal a vital 1-0 win at Celta Vigo.
At the back, Jose Gimenez was excellent for Atletico, Eric Bailly was superb for Espanyol in their 3-1 win at Rayo Vallecano and Nicolas Otamendi helped Valencia to a 1-0 success at Eibar.
Arda Turan impressed in Atletico's 4-1 win, while Denis Cheryshev shone for Villarreal in their 3-0 success at home to Deportivo La Coruna and Pedro was on fine form with a goal and an assist for Barcelona.
Lionel Messi struck two great goals late in the Catalans' win over Cordoba, while Antoine Griezmann hit a brilliant hat-trick for Atletico to make light of the absence of Mario Mandzukic and Koke.
Luciano Vietto scored two more for Villarreal in their 3-0 victory over Depor and Sergio Garcia grabbed a double as Espanyol beat Rayo 3-1.