Barca take over at top as 10-man Real hit back in six-goal thriller

Barcelona took over as LaLiga leaders with a 6-1 thrashing of Sporting Gijon tonight - but their antics were soon overshadowed by the news Luis Enrique is to leave the Nou Camp.

Lionel Messi, Luis Suarez and Neymar - the fabled MSN strike force - were all on target, with Juan Rodriguez's own goal and further strikes from Paco Alcacer and Ivan Rakitic confirming the outcome.

Carlos Castro had scored Gijon's consolation goal in the first half, but the game faded into irrelevance when Barca boss Luis Enrique revealed he is stepping down at the end of the season.

The former B team manager has enjoyed three successful years at the helm but this campaign looks likely to end with a reduced trophy haul, even if Barca did leapfrog Real Madrid to take top spot.

The capital club's star player Cristiano Ronaldo would later score twice to salvage a point from a 3-3 draw with Las Palmas that saw Welsh forward Gareth Bale sent off.

Isco had fired Real into an eighth-minute lead but Tana's prompt equaliser set the tone for a disappointing night for Los Blancos, with Bale shown the red card after half-time for losing his temper.

Jonathan Viera's penalty gave Las Palmas the upper hand and former AC Milan midfielder Kevin-Prince Boateng made it a two-goal cushion in the 59th minute.

Ronaldo teased the late comeback when he converted a spot-kick, and the Gran Canaria club were denied a rare league win at the Bernabeu when the Portuguese notched again with a minute remaining.

Villarreal were big winners at Osasuna, where Rafael Santos Borre bagged a late brace to build on Roberto Soriano's opener and Roberto Soldado's penalty in a 4-1 victory.

Roberto Torres got among the goals for basement boys Osasuna, who are nine points from safety.

Closer to escaping from the relegation zone are Granada, who clinched a vital 2-1 win over Alaves.

Mubarak Wakaso set the improving Andalusians on the path to a third straight home success and Isaac Cuenca's goal rendered Victor Camarasa's response irrelevant.

Struggling Alaves, now level on points with Granada, had Aleksandar Katai and Alexis dismissed for dissent in second-half stoppage-time after a potential equalising goal was ruled out by the referee.

Elsewhere, Celta Vigo and Espanyol played out a 2-2 mid-table draw at Balaidos.

Tenth-placed Celta saw Iago Aspas break the deadlock midway through the first half and, when Gerard Moreno cancelled out the former Liverpool striker's goal, Daniel Wass notched.

The points were split before the break as Pablo Piatti grabbed a leveller after 31 minutes.

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