What has been going on in LaLiga this past week? From even more title race drama and heartbreak at the bottom to the return of fans to stadiums and a brand-new home for LaLiga in the USA, here’s all you need to know.
Late comeback sees Atlético stay top of LaLiga Santander
There was great drama in the penultimate matchday of the LaLiga Santander season, as Atlético de Madrid fought back from a goal down against Osasuna to stay on course for their first LaLiga title since 2014. Goals from Renan Lodi and Luis Suárez in the final 10 minutes earned Los Colchoneros a 2-1 win which means they still lead the table ahead of the final slate of matches next weekend.
Eibar’s relegation is confirmed
SD Eibar’s spirited performances over the past few weeks had given them hope of pulling off a great escape, but the Basque club were beaten by Valencia in the penultimate round to leave them without any possibility of avoiding relegation. An impressive seven-year stay in the top flight comes to an end, therefore, for the Armeros, to date the smallest club to ever reach LaLiga Santander.
Alavés and Getafe are safe
Two more teams have secured their spot in LaLiga Santander for next season, with Alavés and Getafe earning much-needed victories in Matchday 37 over Granada and Levante, respectively. With Eibar already relegated, this means that only one of Elche, Huesca and Real Valladolid will stay up.
Fans return in two LaLiga Santander stadiums
LaLiga Santander stadiums in certain regions of Spain are being allowed to host a limited number of fans over the final two matchdays, so supporters were back for the first time in 14 months this past weekend. Two matches were played in front of fans – Villarreal vs Sevilla and Valencia vs Eibar – and the effect was most certainly felt, with both home sides scoring four.
Koke hits 500
Atleti captain Koke’s focus right now is on trying to win another league title, but the midfielder is hitting milestones at the same time. His appearance against Real Sociedad in midweek was his 500th match for Atlético de Madrid, a feat matched only by club legend Adelardo.
Real Sociedad, Real Betis and Villarreal book their European tickets
This weekend saw Real Sociedad, Real Betis and Villarreal win to ensure European football next season. It remains to be seen, though, who’ll finish in the Europa League spots and who’ll be playing in the new Conference League. That’ll be decided on the final matchday, though as it stands it’ll be La Real and Betis into the Europa League and seventh-placed Villarreal in the Conference League.
A press room for Michael Robinson
This past week saw two of the late Michael Robinson’s most beloved clubs take each other on, as Osasuna hosted Cádiz in Pamplona. To mark the occasion, Osasuna announced that their press room will now be named after their former player, who went on to become an excellent pundit in Spain after hanging up his boots.
Barcelona Femení win the Women’s Champions League
FC Barcelona Femení have made history, becoming the first Spanish side to ever lift the Women’s Champions League. By thrashing Chelsea 4-0 in the 2021 final, the Catalan club have added another trophy to the cabinet after sealing the Spanish league title last weekend. As an aside, Barça are also the first club to win both the men and women’s Champions League.
ESPN becomes the home of LaLiga in the USA
A historic eight-year agreement was announced this week for ESPN to become the home of LaLiga broadcasts in the USA, covering all 380 LaLiga Santander games a season, plus LaLiga SmartBank too. This partnership will begin in August, with ESPN+ also set to offer a variety of surround programming for football fans in North America.