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Spanish Primera BBVA

Benito Villamarin (ATT 31,000) 2nd February 2014 - Kick off 16:00 Ref: C Muniz Fernandez

Real Betis Real Betis vs Espanyol Espanyol

Real Betis 2

Ruben Castro (72, 89)

ft

Castro at the double for Betis

Last Updated: 02/02/14 7:39pm

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Ruben Castro: Scored a brace

Ruben Castro: Scored a brace

Ruben Castro fired Real Betis to their first win since September with a late double strike.

The 2-0 success against Espanyol meant new head coach Gabriel Calderon's first home match in charge was one to remember, and allowed Betis to see a glimmer of light through the relegation trap door.

Betis have looked doomed to the drop, having become increasingly marooned at the foot of the table while their winless stretch has continued.

They are still floundering eight points adrift of Almeria in 17th place, but Argentinian Calderon will see it as a start.

After four barren months, Betis needed something to cling to and star forward Ruben gave them it, netting in the 71st and 89th minutes.

Salva Sevilla headed an early chance wide from Joan Verdu's corner, and Ruben also missed the target in the formative stages of Sunday's tussle.

Juan Carlos saw a shot blocked by Espanyol midfielder David Lopez before Ruben cleared the bar from the edge of the penalty area.

Betis reached half-time knowing they had created sufficient chances to be ahead, but without taking one.

Ruben tried again to no avail early in the second half, and former Real Madrid reserve Juanfran also shot wide.

But the peppering of Espanyol's goal was rewarded with a breakthrough.

Lorenzo Reyes drilled a grass-skimming 25-yard strike that crashed against the left post, with the ball rebounding invitingly for Ruben to sidefoot into the net from 10 yards.

If that was a gift, Ruben's second goal was a treat for the home supporters at the Benito Villamarin stadium.

Leo Baptistao fed a long pass out to the striker on the left flank, from where he made a beeline for the penalty area, and as marker Abraham Gonzalez retreated Ruben cracked a powerful low shot into the left corner.

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Matches

Table

Spanish Primera BBVA

Spanish Primera BBVA
Pos Team P Pts
1 Atletico Madrid 38 90
2 Barcelona 38 87
3 Real Madrid 38 87
4 Athletic Bilbao 38 70
5 Sevilla 38 63
6 Villarreal 38 59
7 Real Sociedad 38 59
8 Valencia 38 49
9 Celta Vigo 38 49
10 Levante 38 48
11 Malaga 38 45
12 Rayo Vallecano 38 43
13 Getafe 38 42
14 Espanyol 38 42
15 Granada 38 41
16 Elche 38 40
17 Almeria 38 40
18 Osasuna 38 39
19 Real Valladolid 38 36
20 Real Betis 38 25