Madrid, Spain – Atletico Madrid enters play on Saturday perfect in league play with six wins from six matches. The club will put its spotless mark on the line when it faces derby rival Real Madrid at the Bernabeu.
Led by forward Diego Costa and former Barcelona midfielder David Villa, Atletico have outscored their opponents by an 18-7 margin over their first six La Liga fixtures, including a 2-1 result over Osasuna at the Vicente Calderon on Tuesday.
Costa scored a pair of first-half goals in a span of seven minutes to keep the club level on points with Barcelona. The 24-year-old swept home the opening goal from near the penalty spot after 18 minutes, before doubling his side's advantage with a more memorable effort.
Costa latched onto Jorge Koke's right-wing cross before superbly heading home.
Real, like Atletico is also unbeaten so far this term, but finds itself in third place in La Liga, two points behind its intracity foes.
Madrid survived a major scare on Wednesday as Cristiano Ronaldo buried a penalty kick in the sixth minute of second-half stoppage time to hang on for a 2-1 victory over newly-promoted Elche.
After a scoreless opening 45 minutes, Ronaldo struck first in the 51st minute to give Real the lead, but Richmond Boakye scored for Elche one minute into stoppage time to give his club what looked to be a sure winner.
But referee Cesar Muniz Fernandez awarded the spot-kick after some grappling in the box and Ronaldo calmly fired it home to give Los Blancos the three points.
Barcelona is also six for six thus far after rolling to a comfortable 4-1 victory over Real Sociedad on Tuesday. The defending La Liga champions will put their perfect record on the line against Almeria on Saturday at the Estadio de los Juegos Mediterraneos.
Also on Saturday in Spain, Vallecano will attempt to rebound from consecutive losses against Barcelona and Sevilla with a road test against Valencia at the Mestalla, while Sevilla will shoot for its second win of the season against Real Sociedad.
On Sunday in La Liga, Osasuna will aim to bounce back from the loss to Atletico with a clash against Levante, while Elche hopes to rebound from its crushing defeat against Madrid with a visit to Celta Vigo.
Finally on Sunday, Espanyol hosts Getafe at the Estadi Cornella-El Prat, while Real Betis welcomes Villarreal to the Benito Villamarin.
In Friday's lone contest, Bartlomiej Pawlowski netted an equalizer 14 minutes from time to rescue a point for Malaga in a 2-2 draw with Real Valladolid.