La Liga is back in full swing as Luis Suarez and Ansu Fati prove that age is just a number by getting Atletico Madrid and Barcelona off to a flier… but VAR left early pacesetters Real Betis raging in Real Madrid defeat
- Barcelona, Sevilla and Atletico Madrid returned to LaLiga action at weekend
- Luis Suarez made a barnstorming cameo appearance on his Atleti debut
- Ansu Fati is closing in on an historic record after netting twice for Barca
Sportsmail pick out five things we learned from the first full weekend.
Age is just a number – Part One
Luis Suarez made a telling contribution in Atletico Madrid’s stonking 6-1 win over Granada
Luis Suarez will be 34 in January but he looked down to his fighting weight on Sunday and his contribution to Atletico’s stonking 6-1 win over Granada could not have been more emphatic.
He set up Marcos Llorente for a goal with his first touch. He then scored twice, first from a Llorente cross and then having first hit the post.
‘If Lionel Messi had been asked to sign for Atletico Madrid at 6pm local time’ quipped one Monday columnist ‘he would not have hesitated’.
As it was Barca did okay without Suarez but all the same they look to have gifted a world class striker to one of their main title rivals.
Age is just a number – Part Two
Ansu Fati took his to tally to nine LaLiga goals for Barcelona, and he is still not yet 18
Ansu Fati is not yet 18 and he has already scored nine goals in the first division in Spain. The all-time record is held by Athletic Bilbao forward Irargorri who scored 11 before he turned 18.
Fati is well on the way to beating that. His ability to find space and to finish looks innate.
Second seasons are often harder but it looks as if the fact that defenders know what’s coming is not going to help them stop the Spain international.
Sevilla mean business
Ivan Rakitic netted his first Sevilla goal in six years as they beat Cadiz 3-1 on Sunday
Just 72 hours after their exhausting duel with Bayern Munich, Sevilla somehow found the energy to beat Cadiz 3-1.
It suggests they have the squad this season to fight on all fronts and Ivan Rakitic will help them do it.
He last scored for Sevilla in 2014 in a Europa League quarter-final. Six years on he was on the mark to get the third goal of the game.
A busy week awaits in the transfer market
Show us a Sporting Director who says he’s happy with his lot with just one week left of the transfer window and we’ll show you someone not completely telling the truth.
Real Madrid would still be open to the right loan offer for Luka Jovic, Barcelona could yet bring in Sergino Dest and ship out Junior Firpo and Diego Costa out and Edinson Cavani in at Atletico can’t be completely ruled out.
It’s also noted that Jules Kounde sat out Sevilla’s win suggesting another Manchester City bid can’t be ruled out.
VAR has only increased levels of controversy
Real Betis raged at the referee and VAR as they went down fighting against Real Madrid
Sergio Ramos scored a late penalty to grab victory for the reigning Spanish champions
‘Penalty, sending-off, Real Madrid, VAR, it was too much for us,’ said Manuel Pellegrini. The Betis coach could now be banned for up to four games for suggesting his team had to beat Madrid and the referees.
He will not be the last to be sanctioned for speaking out over the technology that was supposed to end all arguments but has only managed to multiply complaints.
Betis had Emerson sent off and Bartra conceded a penalty – both VAR decisions – as they went down fighting 3-2 to Real Madrid.