Radamel Falcao converted a penalty kick two minutes into stoppage time as Rayo Vallecano pulled off a 1-1 draw with Atlético Madrid to end the rival’s three-game winning streak in the Spanish league on Tuesday.
Falcao, a former Atlético player, struck the top of the net at the Metropolitano Stadium after a handball by José María Giménez inside the area.
“It feels like a victory,” Falcao said. “We never gave up and kept pushing until the end and got rewarded with the goal.”
Álvaro Morata had opened the scoring in the 20th for Atlético, which was looking to move closer to Barcelona and Real Madrid at the top of the standings. It stayed two points behind second-place Barcelona and five behind leader Real Madrid. Madrid and Barcelona are yet to play this round.
Rayo, winless in three straight games, stayed in 10th place.
Atlético was trying to leave behind its struggles in the Champions League, where it is in danger of elimination after a three-game winless streak in the group stage. Diego Simeone’s team sits in third place in Group B, two points behind second-place Porto and six behind leader Club Brugge.
“We have to stay positive and get back to work as soon as possible,” said Morata, who put the hosts on the board with a low shot from close range after an assist by Antoine Griezmann.
Morata and Griezmann started again, with João Félix relegated to the bench one more time.
Griezmann had a goal disallowed for offside in the 81st.
CAVANI NETS AGAIN
Edinson Cavani scored again but Valencia couldn’t earn a win after defender José Luis Gayà missed a penalty kick 12 minutes into second-half stoppage time.
Cavani gave the visitors the lead in the sixth minute for his third goal in two matches after enduring a scoreless start to his stint with Valencia. Erik Lamela equalized for Sevilla in the 86th, and Gayà had his penalty shot stopped by Sevilla goalkeeper Yassine Bono deep into injury time.
Sevilla defender Kike Salas was sent off for the foul that prompted the late penalty.
Sevilla, coached by newly hired Jorge Sampaoli, was coming off a win at Mallorca to end a six-match winless streak in all competitions. Eighth-place Valencia had drawn with last-place Elche at home in the previous round.
Athletic Bilbao reached three games without a win after being held to a 2-2 draw at Getafe.
Athletic twice relinquished the lead, with Iñaki Williams scoring two minutes into the match and Raúl García in the 62nd.
Getafe got on the board with Carles Aleñá in the 27th and Munir El Haddadi in the 76th.
Athletic, which next visits Barcelona, stayed in sixth place, while Getafe, winless in four games, stayed 15th.