Mallorca moves above Sevilla in Spanish league - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

Mallorca moves above Sevilla in Spanish league

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Real Madrid's Cristiano Ronaldo of Portugal. (AP Photo/Paul White) Real Madrid's Cristiano Ronaldo of Portugal. (AP Photo/Paul White)

MADRID (AP) — Mallorca kept up its bid for a Champions League spot with a 1-0 victory over Villarreal in the Spanish league on Sunday as Sevilla lost 2-1 at Zaragoza.

Jose Carlos Nunes' 82nd minute header from Julio Alvarez's cross gave Mallorca its 10th league win of the season in the Ono Estadi, to maintain its unbeaten home record.

"Today we had a tough test against a rival that is historically bad for us at home, and that has very good players, and we've played an important game in terms of our aim of being near the top of the standings," said Mallorca coach Gregorio Manzano.

The result takes Mallorca into fourth place on 37 points. Sevilla is on 36 points, dropping to fifth.

Barcelona, which beat Getafe 2-1 on Saturday, is top on 55 points, with Real Madrid, which beat Espanyol 3-0, second on 50. Third-place Valencia has 42 after beating Valladolid 2-0 on Saturday.

Also Sunday, Racing Santander drew 1-1 with Atletico Madrid and Athletic Bilbao beat Xerez 3-2.

At Zaragoza's Romareda Stadium Matteo Contini's low left-footed shot put the home side ahead in the 31st.

Frederic Kanoute followed up a rebound off the crossbar to equalize two minutes later.

A Zaragoza corner glanced off Alvaro Negredo's head into his own net to put the hosts ahead again just before halftime.

Sevilla ended the game with nine players after Negredo was ejected for kicking out at Contini and Marius Stankevicius was sent off for a dangerous challenge on Ander Herrera. Zaragoza's Adrian Colunga was sent off for a late tackle on Jesus Navas in injury time.

"This has given me a lot of very good sensations," said Zaragoza coach Jose Aurelio Gay. "It was a win against a very difficult opponent, we've moved out of the relegation spots and we've had two wins in a row, something we haven't done all season. But above all, it's the way we played which is worth highlighting."

Against Villarreal, Mallorca failed to make the home advantage count for much of the game, although Aritz Aduriz came close with an overhead shot that went wide in the 34th minute.

In Juan Carlos Garrido's first game in charge of Villarreal, the visitors started to apply the pressure as halftime approached with Robert Pires, Joseba Llorente and Diego Godin all going close.

Llorente was put through early in the second half and Israel goalkeeper Dudu Aouate did well to rush out and block his shot.

With an eye on Wednesday's Copa del Rey semifinal against Getafe, Sevilla coach Manolo Jimenez left some key players on the bench, including Navas, Diego Perotti and Luis Fabiano.

With a weakened lineup Sevilla failed to find its rhythm. Zaragoza, which has been fighting to move clear of the relegation spots, had a string of chances as it played some of the best football of its season.

Adrian Colunga twice came close to scoring in the first half, Andres Palop managing to get a hand to his shot before the forward then shot wide when through on goal again. The goalkeeper kept Sevilla in the game several times and saved again when Angel Arizmendi shot on the half hour.

Perotti replaced Jose Carlos in the second half as Sevilla's Jimenez looked for more bite in attack and the Argentina winger blasted over from outside the area on the hour.

With the clock ticking down Navas replaced Kanoute, although Zaragoza's well-organized defense kept its lead intact.

At the Sardinero Stadium, Simao Sabrosa surprised the Santander defense in the 24th with a long pass that Diego Forlan latched on to before tapping in to put Atletico ahead.

Gonzalo Colsa equalized in the 37th, spinning away from his marker and shooting with his left foot after controlling a cross from the right.

Atletico beat Santander 4-0 on Thursday in the Copa del Rey semifinal and the two teams meet for a third time this week for the return leg.

Sergio Canales curled a free kick just over in the 18th. Santander then had a penalty appeal turned down after the teenager came down under Tiago Mendes' challenge.

Sergio Aguero came off the bench on the hour although he could not break the deadlock.

Xerez appeared to have secured a draw at the San Mames until Fernando Llorente scored an 85th minute winner for Bilbao to follow his 65th minute equalizer.

Bilbao made an ideal start with 17-year-old Iker Muniain scoring in the third minute, only for Xerez's Vicente Moreno to level with a volley from the edge of the area in the 11th minute and Mario Bermejo to make it 2-1 to the visiting team just before halftime.

Earlier, 10-man Deportivo La Coruna drew 0-0 at Malaga; Osasuna beat Tenerife 1-0; and Almeria beat Sporting Gijon 3-1.

Copyright 2010 The Associated Press.

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