Ivan Rakitic’s late goal puts Sevilla top in La Liga

The draw left Sevilla ahead of Real Sociedad on goal difference. Sociedad plays Valencia on Sunday, when Real Madrid can also move ahead of Sevilla if it wins at Granada.

Ivan Rakitic’s stoppage-time goal lifted Sevilla to the top of the Spanish league on Saturday after fighting back for a 2-2 home draw with Alavés.

Alavés was poised to get only its second-ever victory at Sánchez Pizjuán Stadium when Rakitic fired home a ball that fell to him from a poorly defended cross.

The draw left Sevilla ahead of Real Sociedad on goal difference. Sociedad plays Valencia on Sunday, when Real Madrid can also move ahead of Sevilla if it wins at Granada.

Defender Víctor Laguardia powered in a header from a corner kick to give Alavés the fifth-minute lead.

Lucas Ocampos equalized for Sevilla in the 38th, but his handball allowed Joselu Mato to put the visitors back ahead in first-half injury time from the penalty spot.

Heavy rain bogged down the pitch and made it difficult for Sevilla to deploy its more talented attack in the second half.

“It wasn’t easy considering how the field was with the rain,” Rakitic said. “It is a valuable point.”

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