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La Liga: Atletico Madrid inch closer to title with win at Elche

Atletico Madrid survived a stoppage time penalty and moved five points clear at the top of La Liga with a much-needed 1-0 away win over Elche.

Diego Simeone’s side came into the match on the back of a damaging defeat to Athletic Club, but Atleti returned to winning ways with just four fixtures of the La Liga season remaining.

The away side were on the front foot from the start and looked to have opened the scoring through Luis Suarez, back in the lineup for the first time following injury, only for VAR to bring it back for an offside.

Llorente did however break the deadlock after 24 minutes when his deflected strike from a Yannick Carrasco cut back found the back of the net. A penalty kick for a handball was overturned at the end of the half as Atleti continued to dominate.

Atleti, however, struggled to keep their foot on the pedal in the second half as Elche gained a foothold in the contest. A restless Simeone made a number of conservatives changes as the visitors protected what they had.

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Just as it appeared Atletico Madrid had completed the job, a handball in the box presented Elche with a chance to snatch a point late on only for Fidel Chaves to strike the woodwork with his penalty kick.

Three points stretches Atletico Madrid’s advantage at the top of the table, but Barcelona, Real Madrid and Sevilla all have games still to play this weekend that could see them keep pace with the pace-setters.

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