Both teams came out onto the field with plenty to play for. Real Sociedad trying to put behind them the midweek Copa del Rey defeat to lowly Lleida, and Atlético Madrid looking to take advantage of LaLiga leaders Barcelona dropping points at home to Celta Vigo earlier in the day.
Atlético close gap on leaders Barça
And it was Atleti who came away with the three points as Antoine Griezmann's winner against his former club two minutes from time earned a hard-fought 2-1 win over La Real.
Griezmann's return to form continued as Atletico closed in on Barca with their first La Liga win at their new Wanda Metropolitano home since September.
Diego Simeone's men needed to do it the hard way, though, as they conceded for the first time in five games when Jan Oblak brought down Mikel Oyarzabal inside the area and Willian Jose blasted home from the penalty spot.
Winner came late, but had been coming
Scoring goals has been Atletico's problem this season, but they found a breakthrough from an unlikely source when left-back Filipe Luis cut onto his right foot to find the bottom corner 27 minutes from time.
An inspired goalkeeping display from Geronimo Rulli looked set to deny Atletico as he saved from Griezmann, Fernando Torres and Saul Niguez.
However, Griezmann's bravery was rewarded with a fourth goal in three games when he slid in to meet Saul's looping header despite being sandwiched between a Sociedad defender and the far post.