Diego Simeone's Atletico Madrid temporarily claimed the third spot in La Liga after clinching a hard-fought 2-1 win against bottom-of-the-table Almeria on Sunday.
Atletico's Rojiblancos established an early two-goal advantage through strikes from Alvaro Morata and Angel Correa. However, Almeria's Leo Baptistao narrowed the gap with a goal after an hour of play.
Despite the Andalucian strugglers' spirited efforts in the second half, Atletico managed to hold onto their lead at the Metropolitano.
Antoine Griezmann, who had an early goal disallowed for offside, played a pivotal role in Atletico's bright start. He turned provider by winning the ball back and setting up Morata for the opening goal. Griezmann was also involved in the second goal, feeding Marcos Llorente, who then set up Correa for a close-range finish in the 22nd minute.
Although Almeria, still without a win, showed more determination in the second half, former Atletico forward Baptistao capitalised on a rebound from Jan Oblak's save to bring his team back into contention.
Oblak made crucial saves to thwart Sergio Arribas and Baptistao as Almeria pushed for an equalizer. Meanwhile, Memphis Depay missed an opportunity at the other end.
Reflecting on the game, Griezmann admitted, "They pressed us in the second half; we couldn't find solutions, and it was hard for us."
Real Madrid leads La Liga by a single point over Girona, who later faced champion Barcelona in a Catalan derby, securing the fourth position.