Girona beat Atletico Madrid in LaLiga thriller despite Alvaro Morata hat-trick


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Morata’s hat-trick was not enough to stop LaLiga’s surprise package recording a stunning 4-3 victory.

Ivan Martin’s stoppage-time strike saw Girona beat Atletico Madrid 4-3 in a thriller at the Estadi Municipal de Montilivi to keep pace with Real Madrid at the top of the LaLiga table.

Martin sent the ball into the top corner in the first minute of added time to restore Girona’s advantage after Atletico had fought back from 3-1 down to draw level at 3-3, with Alvaro Morata scoring a hat-trick.

After Morata had cancelled out Valery’s early opener for the hosts, an eventful first half continued with further Girona efforts from Savio and Daley Blind.

Morata reduced the deficit with his second in the 44th minute, before completing his treble in early in the second half – but it was Martin who would have the final say.

Michel’s Girona go back level on points with leaders Real, who beat Mallorca 1-0 earlier on Wednesday, with Diego Simeone’s Atletico 10 points back in third.

Girona took the lead in the second minute through a wonderful finish from Valery, who lashed in from the edge of the box having received the ball from Pablo Torre.

Atletico hit back in the 14th minute as Antoine Griezmann headed a long ball on to Morata and he sent a composed finish past Paulo Gazzaniga.

The visitors were then punished for sloppiness at the back in the 26th minute when Koke was dispossessed just outside his own area by Martin, his shot was parried by Jan Oblak and Savio fired in the loose ball.

And Girona had another after 39 minutes as Aleix Garcia’s cross was helped on by the boot of Artem Dovbyk and Blind was there to tuck the ball home at the far post.

Five minutes later, the goal rush went on with Morata striking again, running on to a pass from Rodrigo De Paul before slotting in.

He then thought he had another goal in first-half stoppage time, only for the effort to be disallowed for offside via VAR.

Atletico subsequently made a strong start to the second half, which included Morata seeing one header saved by Gazzaniga and another go wide.

The former Chelsea man notched his third nine minutes in, lifting a delightful shot beyond Gazzaniga after a great forward burst by De Paul, to bring things all square once more and move to 12 LaLiga goals for the season.

Girona went close to regaining the lead in the 62nd minute as Dovbyk cracked a shot goalwards, with Oblak making a great save to divert the ball wide.

It looked as if the points would be shared, but as stoppage time arrived Martin ensured Girona took all three as he lifted the ball beyond Oblak to seal a memorable victory.


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