MX23RW : Thursday, April 18 13:20:13| >> :600:98717965:98717965:
Mar 1, 2016 at 8pm UK at ​Vicente Calderon Stadium
AtleticoAtletico Madrid
3-0
Real Sociedad
Reyes (8' og.), Niguez (46'), Griezmann (61' pen.)
FT(HT: 1-0)

Result: Atletico Madrid move within five points of Barcelona in La Liga

Atletico Madrid close the gap on La Liga leaders Barcelona to five points courtesy of a 3-0 win over Real Sociedad at the Vicente Calderon.

Atletico Madrid have moved to within five points of La Liga leaders Barcelona following a 3-0 win over Real Sociedad at the Vicente Calderon on Tuesday night.

The victory also means that Diego Simeone's side are now seven points clear of third-placed Real Madrid, who face Levante on Wednesday night. Sociedad, meanwhile, remain in ninth position in the table amid a strong run of form.

Antoine Griezmann takes a penalty during the La Liga game between Atletico Madrid and Real Sociedad on March 1, 2016© AFP

The Atletico team showed just one change from the Madrid derby at the Bernabeu on Saturday, with Luciano Vietto preferred through the middle to Fernando Torres, who dropped to the bench.

As for Sociedad, a growing injury list saw leading scorer Imanol Agirretxe and the likes of Carlos Martinez, David Zurutuza, Sergio Canales and Mikel Bergara all miss out, while Inigo Martinez was suspended.

Carlos Vela was named on the bench for the visitors, with Jonathas joined in the final third by Bruma and 24-year-old Hector Hernandez, who stepped forward from his usual left-back role.

The first half-chance of the match came to Atletico inside three minutes, but Saul Niguez's strike from the edge of the box was always rising over the Sociedad crossbar.

The home side were ahead in the eighth minute, however, when Diego Reyes turned a low Koke cross past his own goalkeeper from close range.

Diego Godin perhaps should have made it 2-0 in the 13th minute when he met a flick from fellow centre-back Jose Gimenez, but the Uruguay international missed the target from close range.

Sociedad continued to struggle as the first period developed, with Atletico looking the more likely to add to the scoring as the 30-minute mark approached and indeed passed.

Antoine Griezmann was next to come close for the hosts, but the Frenchman could not beat Geronimo Rulli from inside the box, before the same player missed a volley at the far post.

Rulli was again called into action in the 37th minute to keep out Vietto and Sociedad managed to enter the break trailing by just the one goal despite being dominated for large parts of the first period.

It took less than one minute after the restart for Atletico to have their second and it came following a terrible piece of defensive play. Sociedad wanted too much time on the ball and Vietto used his pace to snatch it away and deliver into Saul, who expertly volleyed past Rulli from inside the box.

Sociedad boss Eusebio Sacristan threw on Vela just before the hour in a bid to turn the tide, but it was Atletico that wrapped up the points in the 61st minute when Griezmann, after being fouled by Alberto de la Bella inside the box, scored from the penalty spot against his former team.

Vela came close to making it 3-1 in the 63rd minute when he met a low cross from Bruma, but the Mexican's effort was wide of the post.

Both managers made changes in the latter stages in a bid to keep players fresh for the weeks ahead and in truth, the tempo decreased from the moment that Griezmann scored Atletico's third.

Rulli again had to be at his best to keep out a curling effort from Vietto late on, but the visitors, who entered the match having won four of their last five in the league, struggled to make their mark in the final third, although Jonathas came close from a Vela cross five minutes from time.

Atletico should have had a fourth late on when Angel Correa converted a cross from Filipe Luis, but the linesman raised his flag despite replays showing that the Argentine was comfortably level with the final defender.

Atletico's pursuit of Barcelona will continue when they travel to Valencia at the weekend, while Sociedad have a home match against basement side Levante.

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Karim Benzema of Real Madrid celebrates after scoring his team's opening goal during the La Liga match between Real Madrid CF and Getafe CF at Estadio Santiago Bernabeu on December 5, 2015
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