Atletico Madrid add to Cordoba woes
First half goals from Antoine Griezmann and Saul Niguez saw Atletico Madrid win 2-0 at bottom side Cordoba to record their first away win in over two months.
The French striker won the ball back in the Cordoba half to open the scoring inside five minutes, and then Saul marked his return from injury with a headed goal shortly before half-time, and the Andalusians could do little to prevent a 10th straight defeat.
Atletico move on to 62 points thanks to the win to keep a four-point distance with Sevilla in fifth spot, while Cordoba remain languishing at the foot of the table, last picking up a point on January 16.
Diego Simeone's side had not managed to score away from the Vicente Calderon since their 3-1 win at Eibar on 31 January, so a trip to struggling Cordoba was just what they needed, and they took the lead in no time.
Griezmann calmly dispossessed Bruno Zuculini 40 yards from goal and dribbled towards the area before arrowing into the far corner to score his 15th league goal of the season.
Diego Godin could have added another goal before 10 minutes were on the clock as he appeared free in the area to meet a cross, but his header was saved by Juan Carlos.
Cordoba regained their composure and managed to quell the Atletico pressure, but they fell further behind six minutes before half-time, falling victim to another perfectly executed training ground move from Simeone's men.
Jesus Gamez launched a throw in towards Jose Maria Gimenez, and the Uruguayan directed his header towards Saul, who produced an almighty leap to head the ball into the far corner.
It was the perfect way for the 20-year-old to mark his return to action after a five-week absence after suffering a blow to his kidney in a Champions League clash with Bayer Leverkusen.
Now two goals up, Atletico took their foot off the gas but still kept Cordoba at bay for most of the second half, until the hosts kicked into life late on.
Former Manchester United forward Bebe struck the crossbar with a lethal effort and then sent a free-kick into the side netting. And with five minutes to go Jose Angel Crespo almost pulled a goal back as his header from Fede Cartabia's free-kick looked destined for the far corner of the net, but Jan Oblak flew across his goal to tip the ball over the bar.