ALAVES WIN TO MOVE SECOND
By Peter O`Rourke
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
Pablo Brandan grabbed the only goal of the game after just five minutes to lift Alaves above Barcelona into second place just two points behind leaders Deportivo La Coruna.
Valencia missed the chance to move within a point of Deportivo when they were held to a goalless draw by struggling Tenerife at The Mestalla.
The home side struggled to break down the visitors and their miserable afternoon was compounded when Miguel Angulo was dismissed 13 minutes from time.
Athletic Bilbao also missed out on the opportunity to close on the leaders when they were held to a goalless draw at home by Villarreal.
Real Betis moved into fifth spot with a convincing 2-0 win at home at Rayo Vallecano.
The home side took advantage after Moises Garcia Artega was sent-off after 55 minutes by opening the scoring a minute later through Joao Tomas.
Betis made sure of the victory with a second goal from the penalty spot from Gabriel Amato on the hour mark.
Valladolid moved into the top half of the table with a convincing 2-0 win over Real Zaragoza.
Mexican international Cuauhtemoc Blanco opened the scoring from the penalty spot after 24 minutes and Fernando de los Cobos Sales ensured the victory with the second in the 70th minute.
Espanyol ended Mallorca's recent good of form with a hard-fought 2-1 win at The Olympic Stadium.
Alex Fernandez Sanchez fired the home side in front after 22 minutes, but the lead only lasted five minutes as Alberto Luque drew the visitors level.
Espanyol took all three points courtesy of a Martin Posse goal nine minutes from time.
Malaga moved of the bottom four with a 2-1 win over Osasuna.
Panamanian striker Julio Dely Valdes fired the home side in front in the 23rd minute and Ariel Zarate doubled the lead a minute before the break.
Ivan Rosado pulled one back for the visitors a minute from time, but it proved to be no more than a consolation for Osasuna.
Click on fixture for full match summary
Alavés 1-0 Celta Vigo
Athletic Bilbao 0-0 Villarreal
Espanyol 2-1 Mallorca
Málaga 2-1 Osasuna
Real Betis vs Rayo Vallecano
Real Valladolid 2-0 Real Zaragoza
Valencia 0-0 Tenerife
Click here for updated league table