Karim Benzema
Real Madrid's Karim Benzema celebrates after scoring a goal against Cordoba during their La Liga game at the Santiago BernabeuReuters

Real Madrid started off their La Liga campaign with a 2-0 victory over Cordoba at the Bernabeu, while defending champions Atletico Madrid were held in a goalless draw by Rayo Vallecano at the Estadio de Vallecas.

The Los Blancos bounced back from their defeat against Atletico Madrid in the Spanish Super Cup with a 2-0 win over a stubborn Cordoba side.

Karim Benzema opened the scoring at the half hour mark, before Cristiano Ronaldo sealed the game for the European Champions with a late strike towards the end.

Although Real Madrid dominated possession in the opening stages of the game, they were unable to break the deadlock thanks to some good goalkeeping from Juan Carlos.

The Cordoba shotstopper did brilliantly as he made some truly excellent saves to deny the likes of Toni Kroos, making his La Liga debut, Sergio Ramos and Ronaldo in the opening stages of the game.

However, the 26-year-old was helpless as Real Madrid broke the deadlock through Benzema in the 30th minute. Kroos whipped in a corner from the right and the French striker connected with a good header that went in off the post.

The visitors looked a bit better after the break as they created two chances in the opening minutes of the second half.

While Japanese forward Mike Havenaar failed to hit the target in the 47th minute, Brazilian midfielder Ryder Matos sent an effort straight down Iker Casillas throat three minutes later.

Real again started piling on the pressure on Cordoba after the hour mark but Carlos one more did well as he saved new signing James Rodriguez's effort from a tight angle.

Cordoba thought that they had equalised in the 70th minute through a close-range finish from substitute Xisco, but the goal was disallowed as the striker had been in an offside position.

Finally as the match reached its closing stages, Ronaldo doubled Real's advantage in the 90th minute. The Portuguese forward broke free of his marker before finding the net with a calm finish from 20 yards.

Rayo Vallecano vs Atletico Madrid
Atletico Madrid's Mario Mandzukic (R) and Rayo Vallecano's Abdoulaye Ba challenge for the ball during their La Liga match at Vallecas stadium in MadridReuters

Meanwhile, Atletico could not carry on the momentum from their Spanish Super Cup victory, as they were held to a 0-0 draw by Rayo Vallecano.

The defending La Liga champions looked a little lost without their manager Diego Simeone, who has been slapped with an eight-match ban following his conduct in the Spanish Super Cup.

Gabi came close to breaking the deadlock in the 15th minute but his long-range effort was blocked by Abdoulaye Ba.

New signing Mario Mandzukic also received two good opportunities to put his side in the lead, but the Croatian failed to convert either of them.

While his first effort, following a cross from Cristian Ansaldi in the 26th minute, was wide of the target, his second shot, after a couple of minutes, went straight at the goalkeeper.

The second half started with Rayo's Alberto Bueno getting a very good chance to open the scoring, but his effort from the right side of the penalty box was wide of the target.

Atletico's Koke then saw his 12-yard effort fly over the crossbar, before Mario Suarez also dragged his shot wide in the 58th minute.

Rayo threatened to grab the winner in the closing stages through striker Manucho, who got two good chances towards the end of the game. However, Atletico managed to hold on and the game finally ended with both sides sharing a point each.

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