| Zidane and Ronaldo celebrate Real Madrid’s fourth goal on Saturday. (AFP)
Madrid: Real Madrid warmed up for Tuesday’s Champions League date with Marseille in style, swamping Real Valladolid 7-2 at the Bernabeu, including a classy Raul hattrick — but it wasn’t enough to claim pole position in the Primera Liga as Deportivo La Coruna won 2-1 at Seville to keep their 100 per cent record intact.
Diego Tristan, on as a substitute, had to watch from the sidelines as Uruguayan striker Walter Pandiani, who claims his fellow striker doesn’t respect him, put Javier Irureta’s men in front seven minutes before the break with his third goal in three games.
But after another Uruguayan, Dario Silva, had levelled six minutes after the restart, on came Tristan to net his first goal of the new League campaign from close range on 77 minutes and show there is life without last season’s League top scorer Roy Makaay, who has joined Bayern Munich.
Deportivo, thus, lead Real by two points with a maximum nine-point haul to date.
But David Beckham’s Madrilenos showed their class is by no means of the second-rate variety in crushing Valladolid — even if their visitors did at times embarrass their leaky defence.
Real president Florentino Perez said beforehand what matters is winning and in style — and his team was as good as his word.
Raul began his exhibition soon after the Spanish champions had taken the lead when Valladolid defender Julio Cesar headed into his own net on 21 minutes.
He grabbed his first with an improvised aerial backheel just after the half-hour mark and added another with a delicate chip two minutes later.
Zinedine Zidane made it 4-0 early in the second half when he cracked in brilliant volley after latching on to a superb pass from David Beckham, who had another fine game at the heart of the Real midfield.
The England captain blotted his copybook, though, a few minutes later when he handballed a free-kick in the area allowing Valladolid striker Roberto Losada to pull one back from the penalty spot.
A frantic three minutes followed with Luis Figo scoring from the penalty spot at the other end when he was brought down by Cesar.
Just over a minute later midfielder Chema reduced Real’s lead once more when he nodded in from close range, but Ronaldo made it 6-2 with superb finish soon after and it was left to Raul to wrap up the game 15 minutes before the final whistle.
He pounced on the ball after ’keeper Albano Bizzarri spilled a Michel Salgado shot, dribbled the ball towards the open net and finished with a flourish as he backheeled across the line.
It was Raul’s 158th league goal in his 10 seasons as a Real Madrid player and allowed him to overtake famed Hungarian striker Ferenc Puskas to become the fourth highest scorer in the club’s history.
Inzaghi brothers on target
Meanwhile, the Inzaghi brothers helped Lazio and AC Milan earn a perfect two-win start in the Serie A.
Simone Inzaghi scored early and veteran Demetrio Albertini converted a second-half penalty to give Lazio a 2-1 victory at Sampdoria.
Filippo “Pippo” Inzaghi, Simone’s elder brother, netted a late game winner for AC Milan as the European champions struggled to a 2-1 home win against Bologna at San Siro.
Ukrainian star forward Andriy Shevchenko headed in the opening goal for the Milan team, which got their second from Inzaghi only in the 85th.
At Marassi Stadium in Genoa, La Samp squandered a chance to even Simone Inzaghi’s opening goal when Cristiano Doni kicked a penalty slowly and goalkeeper Angelo Peruzzi saved it in the 16th minute.
It was a bitter-sweet return to Marassi for Roberto Mancini, Lazio’s coach, who was a star-forward for Sampdoria for 15 years. Sampdoria supporters gave Mancini a standing ovation before the kick-off.
In Germany, defending champions Bayern Munich slumped to their first defeat of the season when they lost 2-3 at VfL Wolfsburg on Saturday.
Bayern, warming up for their Champions League opener at home against Celtic on Wednesday, fought back from a goal down to take a 2-1 lead but Wolfsburg then scored twice in the final seven minutes for their first Bundesliga victory over the Bavarians.
Bayer Leverkusen jumped back into the lead with a 1-0 win over Hamburg SV while Bayern dropped three spots to fifth, two points off the pace.
Werder Bremen lost the lead with a 2-1 defeat at Borussia Dortmund that sent them down to fourth place.
In the French Ligue 1, Olympique Marseille, spearheaded by Egypt’s Mido, crushed promoted Le Mans 5-0 to seize the lead on Saturday.
Just days before their Champions League return, the former European champions, who have been plagued by scoring problems in recent seasons, were relieved that all four strikers on the match sheet scored.
Mido, hired from Ajax in the off-season, scored twice, in the 54th and 86 minutes.
Ivory Coast’s Didier Drogba had opened the floodgates in the 13th minute, French international Steve Marlet made it two in the 24th and Russia’s Dmitry Sychev added a fourth in the 68th minute.
Ajax Amsterdam unseated RKC Waalwijk at the top of the Dutch first division on Saturday after beating them 4-1. PSV Eindhoven moved into second place ahead of RKC with a 2-1 win over Utrecht. Ajax lead with 12 points after four matches, followed by PSV on 10 and RKC on nine, ahead of Heerenveen on goal difference.
Brazilian Maxwell gave Ajax a 2-0 lead at halftime with two goals within seven minutes. Three minutes after the break RKC had Virgilio Teixeira red-carded shortly after Tomas Galasek had converted a penalty. (Agencies)