Substitute Juanmi Jimenez rescued a point for Malaga who maintained their sixth place with a 1-1 draw against Osasuna in La Liga on Sunday, but it was the very least they deserved after dominating the match.
Malaga have played some attractive football this season but struggled to convert their good play into results and that was the case also against Osasuna.
Having squandered three points in a defeat by Real Sociedad last weekend, when they conceded two late goals, they were heading the same way on Sunday.
Malaga bossed the match from beginning to end with Santi Cazorla missing their first chance in the first minute. Further opportunities came and they went nearest to scoring when a Nacho Monreal volley came back off the woodwork.
Osasuna stole the lead after 33 minutes through Ibrahima Balde from close range after Malaga failed to clear a corner.
Osasuna were set to leapfrog Malaga into sixth place until Juanmi side-footed home a Sergio Sanchez cross after 69 minutes.
While Barcelona's 3-1 victory over Real Madrid overshadowed La Liga action this weekend, there were some important matches which affected the bottom of the table on Sunday.
Zaragoza, at the foot, slumped to a 1-0 defeat at home to Mallorca with Victor Casadesus scoring the only goal before half-time.
Sporting moved out of bottom three with a 3-1 win over a poor Rayo Vallecano who at one point were on the verge of the European places but have now lost their last four games.
David Barral put Sporting ahead with Nacho Novo then adding two more. Miguel Michu grabbed a consolation for Racing in the final minute.
Villarreal avoided dropping into the drop zone thanks to an equaliser from Marco Ruben with 20 minutes to go which gave them a 1-1 draw with Real Sociedad.
It has been a desperate season for a Villarreal side who are more accustomed to being among the Champions League places.
They had lost their last three matches before facing Sociedad and were heading for defeat following an Mikel Aranburu strike until Ruben fired in a Joselu Moreno cross.