Bilbao (Spain), April 24 (IANS) Levante came from behind to defeat Athletic Bilbao Club 3-1 and improve their chances of avoiding relegation from the La Liga.
The victory here on Monday night leaves 17th-place Levante with 37 points, nine ahead of Deportivo La Coruna with four matches left to play. The hosts, meanwhile, sit 14th with 40 points, reports EFE news agency.
Both teams started brightly, but Athletic looked the more likely to score and it took Raul Garcia just 8 minutes to put the home side ahead 1-0 with a blast from 30 yards out that left Levante keeper Oier Olazabal with no chance.
Levante grew to dominate possession as the half wore on and a pair of deadly free kicks by Enis Bardhi in the final minutes before the break turned the contest on its head.
The blame for the first goal belonged largely to Athletic keeper Kepa Arrizabalaga, who did a poor job in positioning the defensive wall. On the second strike, it was the wall – especially Williams and Cordoba, who failed their keeper.
Trailing 2-1, Athletic were more aggressive in the second half and Garcia came close to equalizing with a shot that bounced off the cross-bar.
Williams and San Jose also had opportunities for the Bilbao side and it took a great goal by Jose Luis Morales in the final minute of regulation to seal the win for Levante.