MADRID (AFP) – La Liga champions Atletico Madrid remained in the race to retain their title with a comfortable 3-1 win over Levante on Saturday thanks to two goals from Antoine Griezmann.
With Fernando Torres watching on from the stands before his move back to his boyhood club is concluded on Monday, Griezmann was under pressure to continue his fine form after scoring a hat-trick as Atletico closed 2014 with a 4-1 win away to Athletic Bilbao two weeks ago.
And he duly obliged with two headed finishes from close range early in each half before Diego Godin nodded in Atletico’s third after Nabil El Zhar’s deflected effort had given Levante hope.
Atletico are now level with Barcelona in second place and one point behind leaders Real Madrid, with the latter two sides in action against Real Sociedad and Valencia respectively on Sunday.
Torres was the star attraction before kick-off as he took his seat in the directors’ box to much acclaim.
However, on the field, Griezmann ensured Los Rojiblancos’ former captain will find it hard to get into the side for the visit of Real Madrid in the Copa del Rey on Wednesday.