Maria keeps Real in chase of Barcelona

08:41, December 20, 2010      

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Real Madrid's Angel Di Maria celebrates his goal against Sevilla during their Spanish first division soccer match at Santiago Bernabeu stadium in Madrid December 19, 2010. Real Madrid wins 1-0.(Xinhua/Reuters Photo)

Angel Di Maria scored a goal with 13 minutes remaining to give Real Madrid a 1-0 win at home to Sevilla on Sunday.

The Argentinean scored from a narrow angle to keep his side in touch with league leaders FC Barcelona, although Madrid will need to improve drastically if they are to have any chance of overtaking Barca.

Real Madrid were missing Xabi Alonso, but still good enough to produce another dour display in a bad tempered game in which referee Clos Gomez showed two red and 11 yellow cards.

Carvalho was sent off for Madrid not long before Di Maria's winner and Sevilla's Dabo got his marching orders just before the final whistle.

The game was also marred by ugly scenes between both dugouts at the halftime whistle.

Atletico Madrid remained in sixth place with a 3-0 win away to Malaga. Atletico bounced back from their Europa League exit with three headed goals against the relegation threatened side.

Simao, who will be moving to Turkish side, Besiktas in January put over all three crosses which allowed Tiago to score Atletico's first and third goals and Alvaro Dominguez to add the second against a Malaga team that looked unable to move the ball in midfield.

Zaragoza remain bottom of the table after a horrible 0-0 draw away to Osasuna in an encounter that was painful to watch.

Meanwhile Getafe showed they are in good form by coming back from two goals down to win 3-2 away to Getafe.

Kalu Uche and Ulloa put Almeria 2-0 up, but Manu del Moral, pulled a goal back on the half hour and Miku levelled the scores after 49 minutes.

Boetang then ended a magnificent fightback 20 minutes from time with a smart backheel following more good work from Manu.

Saturday saw FC Barcelona produce another majestic display to defeat local rivals Espanyol 5-1 away from home.

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