La Liga: Espanyol draw with Celta Vigo; wins for Villarreal and Rayo Vallecano
Celta Vigo put their preseason problems aside with an attacking display as they held Espanyol to a 2-2 draw.
Celta were dealt a big blow when Iago Aspas moved to Liverpool in the summer, but there problems were in defence and not in attack as they let a two goal lead slip.
Chris, who was brought in from Almeria as a replacement for Aspas, scored a second goal after Alex Lopez had opened the scoring, but the home side could not capitalize on their lead and instead allowed Espanyol to snatch a draw.
Elsewhere in Spain, Rayo Vallecano started their new season with all three points by defeating newcomers Elche 3-0.
New signing Alberto Bueno opened the scoring after 40 minutes, Alberto Perea doubled the lead just before the half-time, and Bueno wrapped up the points by adding the third with 16 minutes left.
Both teams had a completely revamped squad from last season after a busy time in the transfer market over the summer, but it was Rayo’s players who settled easier and controlled the game throughout 90 minutes.
Elsewhere in Spain, Giovani dos Santos and Jonathan Pereira staged a remarkable fightback as Villareal netted twice in the space of four minutes to see off fellow promoted side Almeria 3-2.
Almeria’s striker Rodri scored a goal in each half to put them on their way for a crucial three points in their first game in La Liga, after spending two years in the second division. In between, Almeria were pegged back by an own goal from Sebastian Dubarbier on the hour-mark.
But Villareal had other ideas as Giovani Dos Santos brought back the score at 2-2 seven minutes from time, before substitute Pereira sealed a dramatic victory for the Yellow Submarines in the 86th minute.