La Liga Team of the Week – Week 13

Aritz Aduriz of Athletic Club Bilbao reacts during the La Liga match between Athletic Club and Levante UD at San Mames Stadium on August 30, 2014
© Getty Images
Sports Mole picks out its star XI from week 13 in La Liga, which saw Real Madrid return to winning ways following back-to-back defeats in the league.

Real Madrid returned to winning ways in La Liga with a 2-0 victory at Eibar on Sunday, but successes for Barcelona and Atletico Madrid mean that Los Blancos are still in third position in the table after 13 games of the season.

Barcelona stretched their lead at the summit with a 4-0 victory over Real Sociedad on Saturday, but Atletico responded with a 1-0 home win over Espanyol to ensure that they would remain second at the end of the weekend regardless of Real Madrid's result one day later.

Rafael Benitez's side managed to record their first victory in three matches away to Eibar, but they are still six points off the summit as the winter break approaches in Spain's top flight.

Week 13's action opened from Valencia on Friday, with Real Betis winning 1-0 at Levante, who remain bottom of the table on 10 points.

On Saturday, as well as wins for Barcelona and Atletico, the points were shared in a 2-2 draw between Malaga and Granada, while Deportivo La Coruna continued their impressive start to the campaign with a confident 2-0 win at struggling Las Palmas and Celta Vigo regained fourth spot with a 2-1 victory over Sporting Gijon.

Sunday's early start saw Getafe record a surprising 2-0 victory at home to Villarreal, before Athletic Bilbao moved into the top seven with a 3-0 win at Rayo Vallecano, who are now just four points outside of the relegation zone.

The latest round of fixtures drew to a close from the Estadio Ramon, where Sevilla returned to winning ways with a 1-0 success against Valencia, which led to Los Che head coach Nuno announcing his resignation at the Mestalla following a difficult start to the season.

It was another pulsating round of action in Spain's top flight and with that in mind, Sports Mole has picked out its star XI from week 13.

Pau Lopez (Espanyol)
Losing 1-0 at Atletico is far from a poor result, but Espanyol were fortunate to lose by just the one goal at the Vicente Calderon. In truth, it was a difficult game for the visitors and they had to rely on their goalkeeper to make a number of impressive stops. Atletico had opportunities to put the game to bed in the second period, but Lopez was in fine form as he frustrated the home team.

Dani Alves (Barcelona)
It appeared almost certain that Alves would leave Barcelona at the end of last season, but he ultimately signed a new deal at Camp Nou. The Brazilian remains one of the best full-backs in the European game and he was once again in impressive form against Sociedad. Alves set up both of Barcelona's first two goals from a wide area, while his rampaging runs forward made it a very uncomfortable match for Sociedad.
Roberto Lago (Getafe)
Preventing Villarreal from finding the back of the net is not an easy task, but Getafe managed it at the weekend as the capital side recorded a 2-0 win over the Yellow Submarine. The likes of Nahuel Leiva and Samu Castillejo tried and failed to breach Getafe's back four and Lago was the pick of the bunch in a defensive position. The 30-year-old marshalled his defence and never looked in danger of losing control.
Sergio Escudero (Sevilla)
Sevilla secured a vital three points against Valencia on Sunday and it was Escudero that proved the match-winner with a strike in the 50th minute. While the Spaniard was a threat whenever he went forward, it was the 26-year-old's defensive work that really caught the attention. Valencia did not have a single shot on target at the Estadio Ramon and Escudero played a big part in his side's shut-out.

Raul Garcia (Athletic Bilbao)
Signing Garcia from Atletico Madrid in the summer was a no-brainer for Bilbao, with the Spaniard a proven performer at this level of football. Aritz Aduriz will take the plaudits for Bilbao's 3-0 win at Rayo on Sunday, but Garcia also played a key role for his team. It was the Spaniard that set up the first of Aduriz's three goals and he was a menace for Rayo due to his ability to arrive unnoticed inside the penalty box.
Ever Banega (Sevilla)
Some will remember Banega as the player that struggled with a host of off-the-field issues earlier in his career, but the Argentine is now arguably playing the best football of his life. The 27-year-old was once again in fine form at the weekend as Sevilla moved into the top half of the table with a 1-0 win over Valencia at the Estadio Ramon. The hosts always looked dangerous when the midfielder was in possession of the ball.
Sergio Busquets (Barcelona)
Neymar, Luis Suarez and Lionel Messi continue to be praised for their incredible performances, but Busquets is also arguably in the form of his career. The Spaniard did not do anything particularly eye-catching against Sociedad, but his overall performance was just outstanding. Time after time the Spanish midfielder was in the right place to put out fires and he helped his team utterly dominate matters in the middle of the park.
Angel Lafita (Getafe)
It has been a difficult start to the season for Getafe, but they moved four points clear of the relegation zone with a much-needed 2-0 win over Villarreal on Sunday. It was a real team performance from the capital side, but the star quality was provided by Lafita, who opened the scoring in the 21st minute, before setting up Alvaro Vasquez for goal number two. The 31-year-old had a fine afternoon for Getafe at the Alfonso Perez.

Gareth Bale (Real Madrid)
Talk of the Welshman leaving Real Madrid continues to gather pace amid what has been a frustrating start to the season for the world's most expensive player. The 26-year-old was impressive against Shakhtar Donetsk last week, however, and continued that form against Eibar at the weekend. Bale opened the scoring with a fine header in the first period and provided a number of dangerous crosses in the second 45 minutes.
Artiz Aduriz (Athletic Bilbao)
Incredibly, Aduriz has now scored 20 times in all competitions for Bilbao this season after hitting a treble in his team's 3-0 win at Rayo Vallecano at the weekend. Ten of those goals have come in the league and Rayo simply had no answer to the 34-year-old's movement during Sunday's clash. It took less than 60 seconds for the Spaniard to open the scoring, before he added two more goals to add gloss to the scoreline.
Neymar (Barcelona)
Neymar just cannot seem to do any wrong at the moment and that was again the case at the weekend. The Brazil skipper scored twice in Barcelona's 4-0 win over Sociedad, in addition to setting up Messi in the latter stages. Sociedad just could not live with the 23-year-old when he moved inside from the left and he could have had three or four during another wonderful performance. He is just getting better and better.

Barcelona's Uruguayan forward Luis Suarez (L) celebrates a goal with Barcelona's Brazilian forward Neymar during the Spanish league 'Clasico' football match Real Madrid CF vs FC Barcelona at the Santiago Bernabeu stadium in Madrid on November 21, 2015.
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