Isco scored twice as Real Madrid cruised to a 3-1 win over Athletic Bilbao at the Bernabeu on Sunday.
The former Malaga man broke the deadlock midway through the first half, with Cristiano Ronaldo, who appeared deflated as talks over a new contract rumble on, heading home his first of the season just before the break.
Isco netted again in the second half, although Ibai Gomez grabbed a deserved consolation goal for Athletic, who were dogged throughout.
With Gareth Bale's expected move still not confirmed before the early kick-off, Carlo Ancelotti made just one change to his side that narrowly beat Granada on Monday as Sami Khedira added physicality to the midfield in Mesut Ozil's place.
Ander Herrera notably found himself among Athletic's substitutes, with the midfielder widely reported to be on the brink of a €36million move to Manchester United.
The hosts were in the ascendancy early on and carved out the game's first real chance 15 minutes in as Karim Benzema latched onto Sergio Ramos' lofted pass, but saw his weak chipped effort fall straight into Iago Herrerin's arms.
Ronaldo tested the goalkeeper with a fierce drive after 24 minutes and Ramos headed the resulting corner wide, as Pepe just missed out on a tap-in at the far post.
They did not have to wait long to break the deadlock, however, as just two minutes later Benzema chipped a masterful ball over Athletic's defence and into Isco 15 yards out, who took a touch and tucked home.
After seeing Benat fire a free-kick just wide for Athletic on the half-hour, Benzema went close twice late in the half, first heading over and then seeing an effort from eight yards blocked after a neat one-two with Alvaro Arbeloa down the right flank.
But it was Ronaldo who doubled the advantage, stealing in unmarked to get on the end of Angel Di Maria's whipped free-kick and plant a firm header to the helpless Herrerin's left.
Madrid's tempo dropped somewhat after half-time, but they retained a threat, with Herrerin called into action 10 minutes into the second half, racing off his line to deny Benzema as the Frenchman charged towards goal.
Ronaldo looked buoyed by his goal and fizzed a free-kick towards the corner, but Herrerin plunged to his right and kept the ball out with a fine save.
And the hosts' pressure once again paid off after 72 minutes as Benzema took the ball into the penalty area, before chipping back to Isco on the edge of the box. The Spain international lashed a right-footed effort across goal, which deflected off an Athletic defender and looped into the opposite corner.
Ibai put Athletic on the scoresheet with 10 minutes to play, smashing home after Andoni Iraola had burst down the right flank and cut the ball back to Markel Susaeta, who miscued his effort into the half-time substitute's path.
But it proved to be only a consolation as Madrid comfortably closed out their third league win from as many games this season.
|22||Á. di María|
|Coach: C. Ancelotti|
for S. Khedira 70'
for K. Benzema 73'
for Marcelo 86'
|Downing: Carroll injury a ´big blow´|
|Irvine: I have not seen Ideye play live|
|Olympiacos triumph in Toronto|
|Giggs likens Van Gaal to Ferguson|
|Copa do Brasil Review: Corinthians among trio on the verge of progression|
|Blanc: World Cup stars will move on|
|Pinto steps down as Costa Rica coach|
|Mourinho planning Drogba swoop|
|UEFA Europa League Review: Rosenborg complete comeback to see off Sligo|
|Mathieu out to enjoy Barcelona move|
|Mandzukic not Diego Costa´s replacement|
|Eliseu returns to Portugal with Benfica|
|Sanabria makes Roma switch|
|Carroll to miss start of season|
|Vidal: I´m not going to Manchester|
|Xavi staying at Barcelona|
|Hannover complete Gulselam signing|
|Astori loaned to Roma, Cagliari confirm|
|Nigeria to talk with Keshi over return|
|Gamberini makes Chievo move|
|Besic poised to complete Everton move|
|Marseille move Montpellier fixture from Stade Velodrome|
|CSL Preview: Harbin eye Luneng scalp, Guangzhou face Hena|
|Guardiola preaches patience with Lewandowski|
|Lampard joins New York City|
|Blanc coy on Di Maria speculation|
|CAF Confederation Cup Preview: ASEC coach confident, Al Ahly seek qualification|
|Chelsea loan Piazon to Frankfurt|
|Pochettino has high hopes for Lamela|
|Aguirre appointed as Japan coach|
|Swansea swoop for Montero|
|Pozuelo makes Vallecano switch|
|Fred back at Shakhtar, Ismaily to follow|
|CFF investigate Fofana accusations|
|Suarez could make sensational Clasico debut|
|Ribery in line for return, says Guardiola|
|Reus could resume training in two or three weeks - Klopp|
|Roma need another defender, says Garcia|
|Everton on verge of new signings|
|Rodrigo hails Nuno after Valencia switch|
|Delph eager for new Villa deal|
|Ljajic not seeking Roma exit|
|Talks held as players strike in Ecuador|
|Crouch excited by Bojan capture|
|Lambert expects swift recovery for Cole|
|West Ham duo fail to travel|
|United to play 3-4-3, says Van Gaal|
|Lallana, Markovic set to feature against Olympiacos|
|Real want to win every trophy, says Bale|
|San Jose Earthquakes 5 Chicago Fire 1: Hosts break winless streak|
|Chelsea have "outstanding squad" - Costa|
|United make winning start under Van Gaal|
|Rodgers plays down Borini injury concerns|
|Atletico Mineiro 4 Lanus 3 (agg 5-3): Own goals gift Brazilians the win|
|Dunga names Brazil assistants|
|Man City show class in Kansas|
|Villa too good for Dallas|
|Santos cannot meet Robinho´s demands, says vice-president|
|Mourinho happy with goalkeeper situation|
|Borini hurt as Liverpool lose to Roma|
|Palace held to draw by Crew|
|Tottenham down Toronto after Lamela brace|
|San Lorenzo 5 Bolivar 0: Hosts close in on Copa Libertadores final|
|Sunderland forward Scocco joins Newell´s|
|Rodgers: We won´t overpay in transfer market|
|Maccabi Haifa friendly abandoned after pitch invasion|
|USA dynamo Beasley joins Houston|
|UEFA Champions League Review: Steaua ease through as Legia Warsaw hit five|
|Youngsters inspire Sunderland to win at Hartlepool|
|Aluko and Sagbo net as Hull City beat York|
|PSG loan Aurier from Toulouse|
|Emotional Davies thanks Swansea fans|
|Mandzukic makes debut as Atletico win|
|Filipe makes bow in Chelsea draw|
|Bahebeck stars again as PSG beat Nice|
|Conte rubbishes PSG talk|
|Tottenham sign Davies and Vorm as Sigurdsson joins Swansea|
|De Laurentiis vows Napoli will fight for Scudetto|
|Lyon sign Jallet from PSG|
|Rijeka deny racism allegations|
|Suarez has been treated ´like a murderer´, says Aspas|
|Basel secure Samuel swoop|
|Thai Premier League Review: Buriram go top as Muang Thong slip up|
|Dnipro-Copenhagen clash moved to Kiev|
|Tevez never considered Juve exit|
|Djuricic joins Mainz on loan|
|Cavani keen on PSG stay|
|Shaqiri flattered by Juventus link|
|Johnson, Sommer arrive at Monchengladbach|
|J.League Review: Kawasaki close gap on Sagan, Urawa move clear at top|
|Coleman to miss Everton´s Thailand trip|
|Thankful Rueda bids farewell to Ecuador|
|Liga MX Preview: Peralta set for home debut, Leon seek recovery|
|K.League Review: Top two draw blanks, Jeju United close in|
|CAF Champions League Preview: Zamalek primed for crucial game, CS Sfaxien meet ES Tunis|
|Low quashes Germany exit rumours|
|Getafe agree Michel loan|
|Porto bring in Brahimi from Granada|
|Pardew satisfied with attacking signings|
|Pellegrini targets further City signings|
|Sevilla complete Krychowiak deal|
|Eisfeld makes Fulham move|
|Zarate opens account as West Ham stumble|
|I have nothing to prove, says Ince|
|Barcelona seal Mathieu deal|
|United prepared to spend big, claims Woodward|
|Shakhtar to play in Lviv|
|Pereyra poised for Juve switch|
|Fabregas eyes trophies at Chelsea|
|Vorm confirms Tottenham transfer|
|Deila: Forster will leave Celtic eventually|
|No pressure for Shaw|
|Van Gaal happy with preparations|
|Diarra aiming for Bordeaux return after West Ham frustration|
|Last season for Montpellier owner Nicollin|
|Monaco: Rodriguez deal too good to ignore|
|Nacional Asuncion 2 Defensor Sporting 0: Hosts surge towards Libertadores final|
|Garcia eyeing Serie A title|
|Father against Vlasic´s move abroad|
|Rodgers welcomes Gerrard´s international retirement|
|Cruzeiro, Atletico Mineiro bid for Robinho|
|Inzaghi not drawn into Balotelli speculation|
|Dunga ´not going to sell a dream´|
|City´s Fofana allegedly racially abused|
|Carroll ruled out of NZ friendlies|
|Rodgers excited by new arrivals|