Las Palmas rose to seventh provisionally with a comfortable home triumph.© AFP
Kirian Rodriguez struck twice for Las Palmas as they continued their impressive La Liga campaign with a convincing 3-0 win over struggling Villarreal on Saturday. Francisco Garcia Pimienta’s promoted side rose to seventh provisionally with a comfortable home triumph in Gran Canaria, giving them belief they can compete for European football. Villarreal, dumped out of the Copa del Rey on Monday by third-tier Salamanca, languish in 14th, four points above the relegation zone. Kirian struck early on and Juanma Herzog doubled the islanders’ lead early in the second half when he headed in a corner.
Las Palmas wrapped up the win when Kirian netted his second after the hour, helping his team recover from their own Spanish cup knock-out against local rivals Tenerife and snapping a four-game winless run.
Villarreal have only won once in their last six league games and have not found form under coach Marcelino, appointed in November.
Later Saturday, Athletic Bilbao, fourth, host Real Sociedad in a Basque derby, among other fixtures.
La Liga leaders Real Madrid are involved in the Spanish Super Cup final on Sunday, against bitter rivals Barcelona, third.
Shock title contenders Girona, second and level with Madrid on 48 points from 19 games, visit Almeria on Sunday aiming to become solo leaders.
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