A bullet header from Karim Benzema and a late Cristiano Ronaldo strike allowed Real Madrid kick off their La Liga campaign with a 2-0 victory over newly promoted Cordoba.
Benzema struck on the half-hour with a badly needed goal having only scored once in the previous 15 games.
Cordoba did unsettle Real in the second half but Ronaldo hit a trademark 25-yard drive into the corner to settle the game in the final minute.
While they beat Sevilla to win the Uefa Super Cup earlier this month, Real were poor during pre-season and were outplayed by Atletico Madrid in the domestic Super Cup, losing 2-1 on aggregate last week.
Later champions Atletico face Rayo Vallecano. Barcelona beat Elche 3-0 on Sunday.