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September 21, 2017

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Atletico beat Osasuna to keep pace with Barca

BARCELONA, Spain -- Radamel Falcao scored again as Atletico Madrid beat last-place Osasuna 3-1 on Sunday for an eighth straight victory to keep pace with Barcelona at the top of the Spanish league.

Real Madrid, meanwhile, bounced back from its Champions League loss at Borussia Dortmund by strolling to a 5-0 win at Mallorca, with Cristiano Ronaldo and Gonzalo Higuain each collecting two goals to help their team stay within eight points of the co-leaders in fourth place.

Atletico has won 11 straight matches in all competitions — including in the Europa League — and extended its club-record unbeaten run to 22 games dating back to April.

Falcao scored his 10th league goal and 13th overall of the season to seal the victory at Vicente Calderon stadium. Only Barcelona's Lionel Messi with 13 goals and Ronaldo with 11 have scored more in league play than the Colombia striker.

"This match confirms the strength of this team," said coach Diego Simeone, who in less than a year in charge has completely turned Atletico around. "The team knows how to play. We mustn't waver from this path."

Atletico started well with only Osasuna goalkeeper Andres Fernandez frustrating its attack.

But Fernandez was helpless to stop Miranda's header when the Atletico defender met Emre Belozoglu's free kick and glanced it just inside the far upright in the 31st.

Raul Garcia, who played on loan for Osasuna last season, doubled Atletico's lead four minutes later by finding the net following a poor clearance of left back Filipe Luis' dangerous cross.

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