Barcelona succumbed to a 5-3 loss at the hands of Villarreal on Saturday at home after having a 3-2 lead in the 80 minutes, leaving them at same number of wins with Atletico Madrid.
Atletico entered their home ground on Sunday with three points shy of Barcelona, however, the victory over Valencia placed them in the third position with more wins.
The home team spent the first half looking for the first goal, which they earned at the stroke of half-time as Samuel Lino hit from the centre of the box to the centre after an assist by Antoine Griezmann with a through ball.
Memphis Depay doubled their advantage 10 minutes into the second half with a header from very close range to the centre of the goal after finding a cross by Nahuel Molina.
Valencia made desperate efforts in the second half to reduce the deficit but failed to get a breakthrough, ending the match goalless.
Meanwhile, Girona once again claimed the top spot in the La Liga points table, sliding Real Madrid to second after a 1-0 away victory over Celta Vigo at Estadio de Balaídos.
Portu scored the match-winner for the visitors as he found Miguel Gutiérrez’s cross in the 20th minute and rocketed it from the centre of the box to the bottom left corner.
In other La Liga matches, Cadiz and Athletic Club settled for a goalless draw, while a ten-men Sevilla drew 1-1 with visiting Osasuna.