Cadiz, Spain, Jan 31 (efe-epa).- Atletico de Madrid on Sunday notched a well-deserved 4-2 road win over Cadiz with two goals by Luis Suarez and one each from Saul Ñiguez and Koke Resurreccion to strengthen its lead atop the Spanish First Division soccer table with its eighth straight La Liga win, now sitting pretty with 50 points in 19 matches.
Real Madrid’s stunning 2-1 loss to Levante on Saturday gave their crosstown rivals a chance to extend their table lead.
The Sunday match was played at the Ramon de Carranza Stadium in Cadiz before empty stands due to coronavirus gathering restrictions.
Cadiz delivered a strong-willed and very complete performance and didn’t make it easy for Atletico, but Diego Simeone’s squad – now 10 points and a game in hand ahead of No. 2 Real Madrid – overcame the threat and decisively grabbed a crucial victory in an intense, vibrant and hard-fought match.
The result was Cadiz’s second consecutive loss, although 35-year-old Alvaro Negredo delivered a superb performance with two tallies – one in the 34th minute and the second in the 71st minute.
Anthony Lozano fired a shot that went wide for Cadiz, almost sending the home teamahead in the early going.
But it was Luis Suarez who, in the 27th minute, got Atletico on the board first with a fabulous free kick, after which Negredo tied it up when the ball came right to him after glancing off Thomas Lemar only to have Saul swoop in just one minute before the break to send the capital squad ahead once more.
When the teams took the field after the intermission, it didn’t take long for Suarez to score again on a penalty kick after Marcos Mauro tripped Lemar, and the match continued back and forth with a series of excellent thrusts and parries with Atleti goaltender Jan Oblak nicely fending off a header by Negredo, who ultimately scored again.
Finally, it was Koke who found the twine for Simeone’s squad in the 88th minute for the icing on the cake.
Atletico once again will play a La Liga match on Monday at home Celta Vigo and mid-table Cadiz will travel to Real Sociedad next Sunday.
Cadiz: Ledesma; Iza Carcelen (Garrido, m.53), Cala (Augusto, m.87), Marcos Mauro, Jairo (Malbasic, m.87); Fali (Nieto, m.87), Jonsson, Salvi, Perea; Lozano (Saponjic, m.65) and Negredo.
Atletico de Madrid: Oblak; Savic, Felipe, Gimenez; Torreira (Vrsaljko, m.46), Koke, Llorente, Lemar (Lodi, m.59), Saul (Kondogbia, m.83); Joao Felix (Correa, m.59), Luis Suarez (Herrera, m.83).
Referee: Gil Manzano yellow-carded Jairo of Cadiz and the visiting Torreira, Vrsaljko, Koke, Kondogbia and Joao Felix.