Real Madrid answered their critics with an impressive 6-1 win over Deportivo, equalling in one match the total number of goals scored in the first five. Cristiano Ronaldo started things off with a header from Özil's corner in the fourth minute, and twenty minutes later Özil got the second himself with a low shot past Manu. Before the half time whistle Di María headed in Higuaín's cross for a third, and although Lassad missed an easy chance soon after the restart, Higuaín scored his side's fourth after Sergio Ramos and Di María combined to set him up. With just an hour gone Zé Castro added to a disastrous night for the Galicians with an own goal, and although Juan Rodríguez did head one back for Lotina's side, Ronaldo completed the "set" after running on to a long ball from Xabi Alonso to cut in from the right wing and drill a low shot past the keeper. Mourinho's side are finally getting in to gear!
Madrid move above Barcelona to third after Guardiola's side were held to a 1-1 draw by Mallorca in the Nou Camp. Messi received the European Golden Boot award before the kick off as the continent's top scorer last season, and midway through the first half he put his side ahead after Pedro played on a Dani Alves cross. But he was unable to beat Aouate a few minutes later when free on goal, and after two or three more chances went begging Valdés was forced to turn a shot from Chori Castro round the post. It was the first time that the visitors had troubled the keeper, but from De Guzmán's corner Nsue stole in to head past Valdés and level the scores. Laudrup pulled his men back after that, and Barça only came near to scoring with a couple of late efforts from Bojan and substitute Nolito. Last year the Catalans only dropped two points at home, this season they have already dropped five.
Villarreal stay above both Real Madrid and Barcelona though after they beat Racing Santander 2-0. The goals came early on, Nilmar starting things off with a deflected shot after Toño blocked a first effort from Rossi. And with less than a quarter of an hour gone Rossi made it two after connecting with Cazorla's long cross to poke a shot past the keeper. The visitors were limited to a few long shots by Munitis and Ariel either side of half time, and Borja Valero and Nilmar both had efforts in the second half cleared off the line, the first by Toño and the second by central defender Torrejón. The win takes Villarreal on to fifteen points, just one behind leaders Valencia, whereas Racing end the weekend down in the bottom three with only four points to their name to date.
A change of manager at Sevilla has brought about a change of fortune, and with Manzano in charge they beat Atlético Madrid 3-1 to move back up to fifth. Visiting keeper De Gea did well to save from Negredo early on, and although Fran Mérdia and Diego Forlán caused some problems for Palop, Negredo opened the scoring after making himself space with just under half an hour on the clock. Seven minutes later Perotti got the second with a shot which took a deflection off Paulo Assunçao, and soon after the restart Kanouté notched up the third with a low shot past the keeper. Diego Costa got one back a few minutes later with more than a little bit of fortune, his shot squeezing under Palop before dribbling over the line off the post, but after that Sevilla held on for the win.
Getafe also returned to winning ways, a 3-0 victory over Hércules seeing them move up to sixth in the table. After a defeat to Málaga in their last home match Michel's side meant business, Manu forcing Calatayud in to a good save and Dani Parejo hitting the bar in the opening minutes. With twenty minutes gone Parejo ran in to head Víctor Sánchez's cross down past the keeper for the opener, and the Spanish under 21 international set up Manu for him to score the second shortly before the break. Calatayud had to be at his best after the restart to keep out Parejo and Víctor, but the keeper arrived too late to stop Miku from picking up a Pedro Ríos through ball and running round him to score again with ten minutes to go. The visitors were left with ten men a couple of minutes later when Abel Aguilar was given a red card for a foul on Boateng, and Albín almost added a fourth when he hit the bar near the end.
The other two games on Sunday evening ended all square, with regional neighbours Almería and Málaga sharing the points in a 1-1 draw. The locals can consider themselves unlucky not to have taken all three though as things turned out. Piatti and Kalu Uche both hit the woodwork early on as they dominated the first half, and the visitors were left with ten men after Eliseu was sent off late in the first half after catching Juanma with a flailing arm. Corona hit the post again immediately after the restart, but three minutes later Quincy put the visitors ahead after a quickly taken Apoño free kick caught the defence napping. Uche wasted a chance to equalise when Rubén saved his penalty kick after Mtiglia fouled Piatti in the area, but the Nigerian striker finally got his reward when he poked a shot past the keeper after picking up a return pass from Bernadello.
The match between Osasuna and Levante also ended 1-1, a result which left both sides just a point above the relegation spots. Both sides had chances in the first half, Reina saving well from Pandiani and Juanfran, and Ricardo responding with a save from Del Horno. The locals gained control after the interval though, with Soriano, Pandiani and Juanfran all failing to find the target before Pandiani beat the keeper after Soriano had battled his way through to the edge of the area. But just seven minutes later veteran defender drilled a shot wide of Ricardo after Rafa Jordà played the ball in to his path to save a valuable point against a team likely to be fighting with them to avoid the drop this season. (03.10.10)
Valencia made sure of another week at least at the top of La Liga after a 2-1 victory over Athletic Bilbao on Saturday evening. Aduríz gave them the lead in the tenth minute, heading in from close to goal after good work by his strike partner Soldado down the right wing. And for the rest of the first half they continued to attack, with Topal shooting just wide and Mata and Pablo bringing good saves out of Iraizoz. The midweek game against Manchester United took it's toll after the restart though, and Gabilondo, Susaeta and Toquero all had chances. However with the game already in injury time Chori Domínguez picked up the ball on the right wing and crossed in for Vicente to coolly round his marker and fire a shot in to the net. It was lucky for the Ches that he did, as two minutes later Gabilondo curled a free kick over the defensive wall to beat César for the one and only time. Too little too late though.
Espanyol have been unable to reproduce their good home results away from their Cornellà stadium, and they were beaten 1-0 at Real Sociedad earlier in the evening. Tamudo was facing his old side for the first time, and he brought an early save out of Kameni with a header. Osvaldo tested Claudio Bravo for the first time at the other end, and the two keepers were in action early again in the second half, Bravo to turn a Luis García free kick round the post and Kameni to do likewise with a wide shot from Tamudo. Bravo saved again from Duscher and Callejón, but with a draw seemingly on the cards, Kameni could only push out a long free kick from Sarpong back in to play, and Forlín somehow managed to turn the ball back in to his own net with his heel trying to get it clear.
Zaragoza and Sporting Gijón kicked off the weekend needing to pick up points after disappointing starts to the season, but in the end they had to make do with one apiece after a 2-2 draw. The visitors took the lead with just over half an hour gone when Obradovic deflected Lora's cross past his own keeper. And early in the second half they seemed to have things wrapped up when Diego Castro converted a penalty after Jarosik was sent off for a foul on Barral. However a few minutes later Sinama-Pongolle got one back after beating Juan Pablo with a shot in off the bar from right of the area, and just five minutes later the French striker equalised after a quick counter-attack, running on to Gabi's through ball to steer a shot wide of the keeper. (02.10.10)