La Liga: Neymar, Suarez bail out Barcelona

LAS PALMAS, SPAIN - FEBRUARY 20:  Luis Suarez of FC Barcelona celebrates with Neymar after scoring his team's opening goal during the La Liga match between UD Las Palmas and FC Barcelona at Estadio Gran Canaria on February 20, 2016 in Las Palmas, Spain.  (Photo by Denis Doyle/Getty Images)

Barcelona survived a late onslaught to beat Las Palmas 2-1 and remain in the driving seat at the top of the Primera Division.

Luis Suarez opened the scoring within just five minutes of kick-off, finishing off a wonderful one-touch move involving Andres Iniesta and Jordi Alba, but just moments later Willian Jose levelled for the struggling hosts.

Neymar restored Barca’s lead shortly before half-time, but Las Palmas kept their heads up and missed four chances to prevent the visitors running out 2-1 winners.

The Catalans stretch their unbeaten run in all competitions to 32 matches and pick up a seventh straight league win, keeping them clear of title contenders Atletico Madrid and Real Madrid in the league table.

German Pezzella grabbed a quick-fire equaliser as Real Betis claimed a 1-1 draw against fellow strugglers Sporting Gijon.

The Argentine turned home a Juan Vargas free-kick after 67 minutes at the Estadio Manuel Ruiz de Lopera, cancelling out Carlos Castro’s opener of just two minutes earlier.


Castro had broken the deadlock, against the run of play, after being played in by Alen Halilovic in a quick break.

The point was the least the home side deserved after creating 17 goal chances to Gijon’s four throughout the 90 minutes.

Marco Asensio’s second-half strike gave Espanyol a vital 1-0 win overDeportivo La Coruna as they tasted victory for the first time in 2016.

The Real Madrid loanee buried the ball into the net from close range after 52 minutes for his first Espanyol goal.

They held on to claim just a second success under coach Constantin Galca, temporarily at least easing the pressure on the Romanian coach.