Barcelona beat Celta 3-1 and got off to its best start ever in the Spanish League, a new burst of acceleration that combined with Atletico's 2-0 stumble in Valencia to make it the top powerhouse in the First Division.
The law of minimum effort took Real Madrid into third place. An exaggerated 4-0 goal-fest against Zaragoza opened the way ahead of Malaga, which had no luck against Rayo Vallecano, falling 1-2.
On a Saturday without the regular efforts of Argentine striker Leo Messi, Portugal's Cristiano Ronaldo and Colombia's Radamel Falcao, Tito Vilanova's Barcelona was still able to put together the combinations to pull out a nice win.
With nine victories and a tie in its first 10 outings, Barcelona is presently riding high.
Messi was unable to notch a goal for his new son Thiago, born on Friday, and it was Adriano, Jordi Alba and David Villa who found the twine to give the squad the victory.
Meanwhile, Atletico Madrid was dealt its first loss of the season by Valencia 2-0 in an away match and is now three points behind Barcelona in second place with eight wins, one loss and one draw. EFE