Sevilla beats Betis in derby to strengthen grip on fourth place

The home victory moved Sevilla within five points of third-place Barcelona. It also ended the team's four-game winless streak in all competitions.

Yousseff En-Nesyri of Sevilla scored the first goal.   -  Getty Images

Sevilla strengthened its hold on fourth place in the Spanish league with a 1-0 win over Real Betis in the Seville derby.

Youssef En-Nesyri scored a 27th-minute winner to give Sevilla a six-point advantage over fifth-place Real Sociedad in the fight for the final Champions League spot. Sociedad earlier lost at Granada.

The home victory moved Sevilla within five points of third-place Barcelona.

It also ended the team's four-game winless streak in all competitions. Sevilla was coming off its elimination in the round of 16 of the Champions League by Borussia Dortmund.

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“The team needed this victory. It keeps us near the top and close to reaching our goal," Sevilla midfielder Joan Jordan said.

“It was a special game for our fans. It's always good to win a derby.” En-Nesyri scored the winning goal with an angled shot from the right side of the area after getting past the goalkeeper inside the box.

Sixth-place Betis, which had a goal disallowed for offside in the 72nd, had won four in a row in the league. It could have moved within three points of Sevilla with a win. Betis trails Sociedad by three points.

Atletico Madrid saw its lead cut to six points on Saturday after it drew 0-0 at Getafe and second-place Real Madrid rallied to beat Elche 2-1 at home.

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Barcelona can move within four points of Atlético if it beats last-place Huesca at home on Monday.

-Sociedad's Run Halted-

Granada ended Real Sociedad's seven-match unbeaten streak with a 1-0 win thanks to German Sanchez's second-half winner.

The result moved Granada to eighth place and left Sociedad in fifth. The Basque Country club had entered the match with a chance to overtake Sevilla for fourth in the final Champions League qualification spot.

Sociedad hadn't lost in the league since a 3-2 defeat at Sevilla in January, with four wins and three draws since.

-Villarreal Rebounds-

Villarreal beat Eibar 3-1 to end an eight-game winless streak in the league. It remained in seventh place.

Eibar's winless run in all competitions reached 12 games, keeping the team second to last in the 20-team standings.

Earlier, Celta Vigo and Athletic Bilbao drew 0-0 in Vigo in a result that left the teams mid-table tied with 34 points from 27 matches.

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