MX23RW : Tuesday, April 13 22:40:02| >> :60:1553:1553:

European roundup: Real Madrid score late to overcome Atalanta BC

Lionel Messi's 17th and 18th of a disappointing campaign so far for the club took him two clear of former team-mate and now Atletico rival Luis Suarez.

Lionel Messi's double in the 3-0 victory over Elche took the Argentina international clear at the top of LaLiga's goalscoring charts as Barcelona moved to within five points of leaders Atletico Madrid.

Messi's 17th and 18th of a disappointing campaign so far for the club took him two clear of former team-mate and now Atletico rival Luis Suarez.

At the start of a significant few days for Barca, the win over LaLiga's second-bottom side set up the prospect of them moving above Real Madrid and into second if they win in Seville on Saturday.

Ronald Koeman's side then have to overturn a 2-0 deficit to Sevilla in the Copa Del Rey semi-final second leg at the Nou Camp next Wednesday.

After a dismal first half, some typical Messi brilliance broke the deadlock two minutes after the restart when he picked up the ball 45 yards from goal, ran to the edge of the box and laid off to Martin Braithwaite whose backheel returned it into his path for the Argentinian to fire home.

Frenkie De Jong's driving run and pass presented Messi with a simple second in the 68th minute and Jordi Alba made things safe with another assist from Braithwaite.

Arch-rivals Real Madrid struggled to break down an Atalanta side who played 73 minutes with 10 men before winning 1-0 with a goal four minutes from time in their Champions League last-16 first leg in Bergamo.

Remo Freuler was sent off for a foul on Ferland Mendy, which the referee deemed denied a goalscoring opportunity, and late on the France left-back curled home right-footed from distance to break the hosts' resistance with his first Champions League goal.

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Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Atletico MadridAtletico30207352203267
2Real Madrid30206453242966
3Barcelona30205569264365
4Sevilla30194744242061
5Real Sociedad301211747311647
6Real Betis30145114043-347
7Villarreal301113643331046
8Granada30116133650-1439
9Levante30911103739-238
10Celta Vigo30910114148-737
11Athletic Bilbao30910113933637
12CadizCadiz3098132745-1835
13Valencia30810123742-534
14Osasuna30810122536-1134
15Getafe3079142234-1230
16Huesca30512133145-1427
17Real Valladolid30512132741-1427
18ElcheElche30511142746-1926
19AlavesAlaves3059162447-2324
20EibarEibar30411152236-1423

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