Moyes the man! Ex-United boss beats Barca while Real fall in night of La Liga upets
His reputation might have been in tatters after his disastrous reign at Manchester United last season.
But David Moyes looks to be on the road to recovery in Spain after his Real Sociedad side claimed an impressive scalp with a 1-0 La Liga victory over Barcelona.
While the Basque side could count themselves lucky to be ahead when a Jordi Alba own goal gave them the lead at the Anoeta Stadium after just two minutes, Moyes' men held on to their advantage for the rest of the game which saw Lionel Messi and Neymar start on the bench.
The former Everton boss was thrilled with the result and his side's defending as he declared: "It is the happiest night since I arrived in San Sebastian. We worked very hard. The players showed courage and defended incredibly.
"This team has shown it is capable in the big games against the best teams in the league and now we must show the same capability to win the other games. At home, for example, we have let a lot of points slip away.
"We defended well tonight and that is what we have to do in all the games, but in other games when we don’t have to defend so much we also have to pass the ball and attack better."
Moyes' counterpart Luis Enrique was left to rue his decision to omit his stars from the starting line-up as Barca missed out on the chance to summit the Spanish top flight.
Valencia upset Real
However, the Catalans can thank Peter Lim's Valencia for preventing Real Madrid from cementing their advantage after they stunned the league leaders with a 2-1 win at the Mestalla.
While Carlo Ancelotti's European champions took the lead through a Cristiano Ronaldo penalty in the 14th minute, the hosts struck back in the second half to claim all three points.
Antonio Barragan equalised in the 52nd minute after his shot deflected off Pepe before Argentine defender Nicolas Otamendi headed the winning strike 13 minutes later from a corner.
The result sent the jubilant Mestalla faithful into raptures after the final whistle as Valencia snapped Real's mammoth 22-game winning streak - a Spanish record.
Match winner Otamendi said: "Today, the Mestalla proved that the win was possible, that the team and fans together can achieve anything. Despite our young age we are very motivated to keep growing.
"Thankfully, today I was able to score a goal and lead the team to the victory, but the most important thing is to work on a daily basis in order to get into the match in the best possible way."
Sources: AFP, Reuters