Barcelona win Clasico, take four-point La Liga lead; Sevilla sink Villarreal

Barcelona remained atop the La Liga standings with a 2-1 Clasico win over bitter rivals Real Madrid in a charged Camp Nou on Sunday.

Jeremy Mathieu opened Barca's account in the 19th minutes with a well-placed header from a Lionel Messi free-kick.

A sliding Cristiano Ronaldo converted a wonderfully-crafted back-heel pass from Karim Benzema in the 31st to put matters all-square at half-time.

But Luis Suarez controlled and slotted in an inch-perfect Dani Alves long-ball in the 56th for the victory and a four-point advantage over Real in the league standings.

Sevilla made it two wins in four days over Villarreal as they won 2-0 at El Madrigal.

Unai Emery's side moved four points behind fourth-placed Atletico Madrid and six clear of Villarreal in sixth courtesy of second-half strikes from Coke and Vitolo.

The victory caps a fine 10 days for Los Rojiblancos at Villarreal's expense after they secured a 5-2 aggregate triumph over Marcelino Garcia Toral's side in the Europa League round of 16 - with wins in both legs.

Deportivo La Coruna are one point above the relegation zone after they were held to a goalless draw at home by Espanyol.

The Galicians created more chances than the visitors although perhaps the clearest opportunities fell to the Catalans, but Depor goalkeeper Fabricio and his opposite number Kiko Casilla produced strong displays to keep the score goalless.

Victor Fernandez's side are now in 16th and one point above Levante, who are in the bottom three behind 17th-placed Almeria on goal difference.

Espanyol meanwhile move on to 34 points but have not won any of their last three matches, while Deportivo are now without a win in six league games.

Cordoba picked up three red cards as the Primera Division's bottom side slipped to a 3-1 defeat at Real Sociedad.

Aleksandar Pantic was dismissed after just six minutes but the visitors still managed to take the lead as Florin Andone put them in front.

Imanol Agirretxe's equaliser meant David Moyes' side were level at the break and they moved in front when Gonzalo Castro scored with just 15 minutes remaining.