Real Madrid loses again and there’s another La Liga logjam

Real Madrid
Photo by David S. Bustamante/Soccrates/Getty Images
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What would it mean for Diego Simeone’s legacy if he leads Atletico Madrid to back-to-back La Liga crowns?

The struggles of Barcelona and Real Madrid may help us find out, though a fourth club is quietly leading the league in points per game.

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Atleti beat Barcelona 2-0 on Saturday and Real Madrid was beaten by La Liga’s other Barcelona club, Espanyol, on Sunday.

Raul De Tomas scored early and ex-Barca man Aleix Vidal had it 2-0 at the hour mark, and Real’s only answer came through Luka Jovic’s set-up of Karim Benzema with 19 minutes to play.

The result leaves Atleti and Real on 17 points, with Real Sociedad capable of catching or passing them after a match at Getafe early Sunday afternoon heading into the international break.

Sevilla would hit 17 points with a win over Granada later Sunday while also holding a match-in-hand on the field. Barcelona has 12 points but a match-in-hand on the field.

It’s very early days, but another La Liga title would give Atleti three of the last 10. That’s shockingly one more than their more celebrated city rivals.

The last time La Liga had back-to-back champions and the club wasn’t Real or Barcelona was Athletic Bilbao in 1984, when the Basque Country was in charge of Spanish football (Real Sociedad won two-straight before their rivals.

Real is now winless in three matches across all competitions following last week’s league draw at home to Villarreal and a monumental midweek Champions League home loss to Sheriff Tiraspol.