Emanuel Boetang scored a hat-trick and Enis Bardhi scored twice as Levante defeated FC Barcelona 5-4 to end the league champion’s hopes of going an entire season without a defeat.
Barca should have known it would be a difficult game in the Ciudad de Valencia Stadium, as coach Ernesto Valverde gave a much-needed rest to Leo Messi who wasn’t included in the squad.
Although Messi was absent, Barca’s problems were in defense as Boetang scored on 8:30, and although Phillipe Coutinho pulled one back before the break, Bardhi netted twice and Boetang completed his hat-trick in a devastating 10 minute spell after halftime.
Coutinho then completed his hat-trick, while Suarez scored a penalty and a Barca fightback looked possible, but Levante held on for a win, while Barca’s unbeaten run comes to an end after 43 games.
Real Madrid won their penultimate game before the Champions League final as Gareth Bale scored twice in their 6-0 demolition of a weak Celta Vigo.
The visitors were denied a clear penalty for a Casemiro foul on Brais Mendez before Bale opened the scoring following a powerful run. He then doubled Madrid’s lead before Isco showed he has returned to fitness with a curling shot into the top corner.
Achraf scored Madrid’s fourth goal in the second half and a Sergi Gomez own goal, which summed up Celta’s afternoon, making it 5-0 before Tony Kroos rounded off the scoring in the closing minutes.
Meanwhile Villarreal and Sevilla assured their places in next season’s Europa League on Saturday in Spain.
Villarreal defeated already relegated Deportivo la Coruna 4-2 in a game they were leading 3-0 at halftime thanks to two goals from Samu Casillejo and a further strike by Manu Trigueros.
Two goals from Borja Valle briefly gave Deportivo hope of a fightback, but Denis Cheryshev’s late goal not only assured Villarreal a place in Europe, but that they will avoid having to play a preliminary round.
Sevilla secured seventh place as they drew an entertaining Seville derby 2-2 in Betis’ Benito Villamarin Stadium.
Marc Bartra opened the scoring for Betis after just five minutes, but Sevilla turned it around in the second half with goals from Wissam Ben Yedder and Simon Kjaer only for Betis’ young striker Loren Moron to assure a share of the points with 9 minutes to go.
Sevilla’s celebrations may be tempered by the fact they have to play three qualifying rounds to reach the Europa League group stage.
Atletico Madrid warmed up for next week’s Europa League final with a 1-0 win away to Getafe, which ended Getafe’s European hopes.
Koke’s early goal separated the two sides and Jan Oblak saved a 77th minute penalty from Faycal Fajr which would have assured a share of the points. Getafe have now missed 7 penalties of the last 8 they have taken this season.
Other games on Saturday saw Alaves beat Athletic Club Bilbao 3-1, while Eibar won 1-0 at home to Las Palmas and Real Sociedad said goodbye to club captain Xabi Prieto, who is retiring after spending his entire season at the club, with a 3-2 win at home to Leganes. Enditem