La Liga round-up

Madrid destroy Racing, Barca cruise

October 23, 2010
By ESPNsoccernet staff

Real Madrid crushed Racing Santander 6-1 in their La Liga clash at the Bernabeu on Saturday night as they returned to the top of the table.

Cristiano Ronaldo
GettyImagesCristiano Ronaldo was the star of the show for Real Madrid

European gallery

The star for Jose Mourinho's men was Cristiano Ronaldo, who put in a sensational performance, netting four goals for Los Blancos. Gonzalo Higuain opened the scoring after ten minutes and Real never looked back, with Ronaldo adding a brace to make it 3-0 after half an hour.

Another two from the Portuguese forward, including a penalty, and 63rd-minute strike from Mesut Ozil completed the home team's scoring, with Santander claiming a consolation goal through Markus Rosenberg with 17 minutes remaining.

Barcelona had earlier secured a comfortable 2-0 victory at Real Zaragoza courtesy of two goals from Lionel Messi.

Messi - who struck a hat-trick at La Romareda last season - broke the deadlock towards the end of the first half when he ran onto David Villa's through-ball before slipping the ball beyond Zaragoza goalkeeper Antonio Doblas.

He completed the scoring on 66 minutes when he fired home the rebound after Andres Iniesta had seen his shot blocked.

Valencia - league leaders at the start of October - saw their recent dip in form continue as they went down to a 2-1 defeat at home to Real Mallorca.

Valencia had won all but one of their games in La Liga prior to last week's 2-1 defeat to Barcelona, but they looked out of sorts in the Champions League draw against Rangers in midweek.

On Saturday, they were two goals down inside half an hour at the Mestalla as a Gonzalo Castro brace - the first a penalty - put Mallorca in control. Roberto Soldado reduced the arrears shortly afterwards from the penalty spot, but the hosts were unable to find an equaliser.