Resurgent Valencia turned up the heat on Atletico Madrid in the battle for third place in La Liga when Andre Gomes scored and then set up Paco Alcacer for their second goal in a 4-0 stroll at struggling Elche on Friday.
After failing to qualify for Europe last season, Valencia are heading into the final weeks of the La Liga campaign in a strong position to secure a lucrative berth in continental competition for next term.
Atletico Madrid have four games in the coming weeks that are likely to determine whether they have truly joined Spain`s elite or are in danger of slipping back in the second rank behind powerhouses Real Madrid and Barcelona.
The Japan Football Association said Thursday it will not address a match-fixing scandal engulfing Japan coach Javier Aguirre until after the Asian Cup, as speculation grows over the Mexican`s possible sacking.
Real Madrid forward Cristiano Ronaldo has urged fans to get behind "important player" Welshman Gareth Bale after the latter was criticised for being selfish during the Spanish football club's win over Espanyol in La Liga.