Antoine Griezmann ensured that Atletico Madrid kept the pressure on Barcelona by scoring their sole goal in a 1-0 win over Levante at home on Sunday.
Second-place Atletico remained unbeaten in 16 consecutive rounds of the Spanish league and pulled to within two points of Barcelona before the leader's host Eibar later.
Griezmann scored his team-leading ninth league goal of the season when he fired a spot kick over Levante goalkeeper Oier Olazabal in the 57th minute following a handball by defender Nikola Vukcevic.
Atletico dominated possession and the scoring chances but its lack of finishing touch meant it needed goalkeeper Jan Oblak to block a shot by Jose Morales in the 70th to guarantee the victory.
The hosts thought they scored early through Jorge 'Koke' Resurrection, but the referee waived his goal off because of a foul at the start of the attack that he spotted during a video review.
Atletico defender Stefan Savic had to be substituted before 10 minutes were up due to muscle pain in his left thigh.
Also later, third-place Sevilla also visits Athletic Bilbao, while fifth-place Real Madrid is at Real Betis.