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La Liga wrap: Nine-man Real held by Villarreal

22 March 2012 00:38

Jose Mourinho was sent to the stands and saw two of his players sent off as Real Madrid were held 1-1 by Villarreal in La Liga on Wednesday.

Villarreal kept out their visitors throughout the first 45 minutes of the match at Estadio El Madrigal, but fell behind to a Cristiano Ronaldo goal two minutes past the hour mark.

The Portugal international played a one-two with Mesut Oezil, before side-stepping Villarreal goalkeeper Diego Lopez Rodriguez to put Real 1-0 up.

The lead lasted until the 83rd minute, when veteran midfielder Marcos Senna curled home a free-kick to draw the home side level.

Mourinho was sent to the stands by referee Jose Luis Paradas Romero, who deemed the Real coach to have sarcastically applauded the decision to award Villarreal the set piece.

Worse was to the follow for the away team.

Centre-back Sergio Ramos, making his 300th appearance for Real, followed through on Nilmar with an elbow, and received his marching orders for a second bookable offence.

Just moments later, Oezil received a straight red card, apparently for showing dissent to referee Romero.

After previously enjoying a run of 11 consecutive La Liga victories, Real have now drawn twice in succession, with their lead over second-placed Barcelona shrinking to six points.

Also on Wednesday, bottom side Real Zaragoza managed an unlikely 2-1 win away to third-place Valencia.

Zaragoza fell behind to Pablo's close range goal in the sixth minute at Estadio Mestalla.

The away side went down to 10 men as early as the 21st minute, when Pablo Alvarez received a straight red for a foul on Aritz Aduriz.

Despite their numerical disadvantage, Apono levelled with a penalty in the 30th minute.

The midfielder made it 2-1 to the visitors with 12 minutes to go, and they held out for an unexpected win, despite substitute Franco Zuculini receiving a second yellow card with a minute remaining.

Atletico Madrid overcame Athletic Bilbao 2-1 at home, thanks to a brace from Colombia international Radamel Falcao.

Levante earned an important victory in their bid to earn Champions League qualification, as they defeated 10-man Real Sociedad 3-1 away from home.

Finally, Mallorca twice gave up the lead in their match away to Sporting Gijon, before Alvaro Gimenez's 77th-minute goal sealed a 3-2 win for the visitors.

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