Falcao hits five, Levante thrash Mallorca
Radamel Falcao became the first player in a decade to score five goals in a La Liga match as Atletico Madrid thrashed Deportivo La Coruna 6-0 to keep the pressure on Barcelona at the top of Spain's top flight on Sunday.
Falcao hit a double along with a Diego Costa strike to put Atleti out of sight by half-time. He completed his hat-trick with a second-half penalty before hitting two more to make him the first player to hit five in a La Liga game since Fernando Morientes for Real Madrid against Las Palmas in 2002.
It means the Colombian has 16 goals in the league this season and it was Atletico's eighth straight home win of the campaign. A hapless looking Deportivo side remain bottom of the table on 11 points, level with Espanyol.
Koke and Diego Costa went close in the opening minutes for the home team. At the other end for Deportivo the veteran Juan Carlos Valeron was pulling the strings in midfield against a team he joined as far back as 1998. The bottom of the table side looked comfortable until Atletico's opener on 22 minutes when Costa jumped highest to head home a corner.
Depor nearly equalised when Valeron headed against the post moments after, but within five minutes Falcao had doubled the home side's lead. Koke found the Colombian wide on the right and the speed and power with which he advanced on goal before hitting a low finish showed again why he is such a hot property.
Deportivo keeper Dani Aranzubia saved well from Costa before Falcao hit his second just before half-time, smashing a half-volley past Aranzubia directly from a throw-in. His second-half hat-trick began with the penalty he had won himself, before heading the ball from a yard out and he had to work slightly harder for his last before shooting home from close range.
Earlier on Sunday, Levante thrashed Mallorca 4-0 with goals from Obafemi Martins, David Navarro, Ruben Garcia and Vicente Iborra to move into sixth position.
A first-half header from Aritz Aduriz, his ninth of the season, was enough for Athletic to edge a competitive encounter with Celta Vigo.