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REAL MADRID moved back to the top of the Liga table in Spain on Tuesday evening, with an impressive 3-1 victory over fellow high-flyers Rayo Vallecano.

Portuguese international Luis Figo celebrated winning the prestigious Ballon d'Or award this week by grabbing the first goal of the game after just nine minutes, and it wasn't long before the home side had taken control of the game.

Ivan Helguera doubled Madrid's lead just five minutes later, and this was enough to send Vincent del Bosque's men into the break with a comfortable cushion.

Michel looked to have given Vallecano a way back into the game on 64 minutes, but it wasn't to be, as Spanish international Raul secured the points for Madrid ten minutes later.

The win means that Madrid have taken full advantage of their game in hand over former leaders Valencia and return to the summit in Spain, but with Hector Cuper's men playing again on Wednesday it could be a short-lived stay at the top for Madrid.