Millennium Post

Real falter against Malaga, Messi scores in Barca’s win

Real Madrid coach Jose Mourinho was under renewed pressure on Saturday after his team lost 3-2 at Malaga, a defeat which left the champions 16 points behind leaders Barcelona.

 The disappointment was compounded by Mourinho’s controversial decision to drop goalkeeper and captain Iker Casillas from the starting line-up.

It was the first time in 10 years that the Spanish World Cup winner had been axed with 25-year-old Antonio Adan called up to take the place of the benched veteran.

Isco and Roque Santa Cruz, with a double, grabbed the goals for Malaga.

Madrid did level at 1-1 with an own-goal by Samuel Sanchez and Karim Benzema made it 3-2 eight minutes from time but the home side clung on to celebrate their first win over Real in 29 years.

Malaga’s win left the Costa del Sol club in fourth, two points behind Madrid on 31 points while Atletico Madrid, who beat Celta Vigo 1-0 on Friday, are second, nine points behind Barcelona.

Unbeaten La Liga leaders Barcelona continued their record-breaking start to the season when Lionel Messi struck his 91st goal of 2012 in a 3-1 win at Real Valladolid on Saturday.

The victory at Valladolid’s Jose Zorrilla stadium was Barca’s 16th in 17 league matches this term and restored their nine-point advantage over second-placed Atletico Madrid, who won 1-0 at home to Celta Vigo on Friday.
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