There were goals aplenty for some of Europe's leading clubs this weekend as both halves of Manchester celebrated big wins, Real Madrid CF kicked off the Liga season with a 6-0 success and PSV Eindhoven racked up half a dozen strikes of their own.
Manchester United FC were rampant as they consigned a depleted Arsenal FC side to their biggest defeat of the Premier League era, Wayne Rooney notching a hat-trick and Ashley Young scoring twice in an 8-2 triumph. "The performance today was incredible and we deserved the result," said Rooney. The win took United ahead of Manchester City FC at the summit, their neighbours having posted an eye-catching 5-1 win at Tottenham Hotspur FC – Edin Džeko hitting four – while Chelsea FC beat Norwich City FC 3-1 and Liverpool FC downed Bolton Wanderers FC by the same scoreline.
There was a treble for Cristiano Ronaldo too as Real Madrid eased past Real Zaragoza to make a stunning start to their Liga bid. "We're a proper team and we'll win the Liga playing this way," said the Portugal forward, whose side laid down an early warning to champions FC Barcelona, in action on Monday. Former Madrid forward Roberto Soldado was in fine form as well, his three goals helping Valencia CF record a 4-3 win against Real Racing Club, while Real Betis Balompié won the battle of the promoted teams as they prevailed 1-0 at Granada CF.
In Germany, Mario Gomez took the headlines as his hat-trick powered FC Bayern München to a 3-0 defeat of 1. FC Kaiserslautern that took the Bavarian giants top in Germany. They are joined on points by SV Werder Bremen, who emerged 2-1 victors at TSG 1899 Hoffenheim courtesy of Markus Rosenberg's late volley. Elsewhere, titleholders Borussia Dortmund drew 0-0 with last season's runners-up Bayer 04 Leverkusen and Raúl González hit the winner as FC Schalke 04 saw off VfL Borussia Mönchengladbach 1-0 to end their opponents' unbeaten start.
LOSC Lille Métropole grabbed a second consecutive win in Ligue 1 as they edged Olympique de Marseille 3-2 in northern France, Moussa Sow scoring twice to leave the visitors 16th and still in search of their first victory this term. The champions themselves lie two points off leaders Montpellier Hérault SC, who lost their 100% record in a 2-1 reverse at the hands of Olympique Lyonnais, while Paris Saint-Germain FC engineered a late 3-1 triumph at Toulouse FC.
PSV got themselves in among the goals thanks to a 6-1 humbling of SBV Excelsior, Dries Mertens weighing in with half their tally. FC Twente continue to set the early pace in the Eredivisie, however, as they made it four wins from four by dispatching VVV-Venlo 4-1. In neighbouring Belgium, meanwhile, champions KRC Genk still boast a solitary win after five outings, having drawn 0-0 with KV Mechelen.
There was a change at the top in Russia as previous leaders PFC CSKA Moskva played out a 2-2 derby draw at FC Spartak Moskva, and that allowed FC Zenit St Petersburg to leap ahead on goal difference in their meeting with FC Krasnodar. Aleksandr Kerzhakov added his name to the list of weekend hat-trick heroes as Zenit swept the visitors aside 5-0. It was a similar tale in Ukraine, finally, with FC Dynamo Kyiv and FC Shakhtar Donetsk now tied at the top after Shakhtar could only draw 2-2 at FC Chornomorets Odesa.