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First place in La Liga no longer belongs to Lionel Messi and Barcelona. Real Madrid went to Real Sociedad and won 2-1 on Sunday to move into first place in the league with eight games to go. Real has 65 points, the same as Barca, but holds the first tiebreaker (head-to-head record). Real drew Barca in their first meeting and beat their rival in the second to earn the crucial tiebreaker. 

Against a team pushing for European places in Real Sociedad, Real's first half went by with nothing to show for it as each team was playing more cautious and tactical. But in the second half, Real Sociedad conceded a penalty kick that Sergio Ramos finished with class:

Then it was Karim Benzema keeping up his electric form with a goal in the 70th minute that ended up being the winner: 

Mikel Merino scored late for Sociedad to create a nervy ending, but Real Madrid held on for the vital victory. 

Next in the title race is Barcelona vs. Athletic Bilbao on Tuesday.