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Valencia kick-off La Liga with victory

  • Valencia, Sevilla and Athletico Bilbao all win on opening night of action in Spain's La Liga
  • Joaquin brace help Valencia to 3-1 win over Malaga, Bilbao beat Hercules 1-0
  • Genoa make winning start to Serie A; Roma draw a blank against Cesena

(CNN) -- Valencia, Athletico Bilbao and Sevilla all recorded victories on the opening day of the season in Spain's La Liga.

Valencia's 3-1 win over Malaga came courtesy of a strike by debutant Aritz Aduiz who scored after 10 minutes. Two goals midway through the second half by winger Joaquin sealed the points.

Earlier Athletico Bilbao overcame newly-promoted Hercules 1-0 thanks to a 47th minute strike from Fernando Llorente who had the honor of scoring the first goal of the 2010/11 La Liga season.

Sevilla recorded the most emphatic win on the first day of the season with a 4-1 demolition of Levante who had taken an early lead.

But Abdoulay Konko struck back with two goals in either half, and Alvaro Negredo netted from the penalty spot. Renato wrapped up the win with an 88th minute strike.

Sunday will see Jose Mourinho begin his quest to conquer the dominance of arch rivals Barcelona as his Real Madrid team travel to Real Mallorca.

Barcelona will start their title defense at Racing Santander and will be buoyed by the recent acquisition of Argentina captain Javier Mascherano, who has arrived from Liverpool for a reported €22 million.

Meanwhile in Italy, Serie A kicked off Saturday with Udinese losing at home to Genoa, who bagged the points thanks to a goal from defender Giandomenico Mesto in the 81st minute.

In the only other game Saturday, 2010 runners up, Roma drew 0-0 with Cesena at the Stadio Olimpico.

Last season's third place team, AC Milan are at home to Lecce, but will not have new €24 million signing Zlatan Ibrahimovic available for selection. The Swedish international, who has returned to Italy after one year with Barcelona, will undergo a medical on Monday, according to AFP.

Juventus start their 2010/11 campaign with a trip to Bari, Fiorentina host Napoli, Sampdoria face Lazio and Palermo take on Cagliari.

Inter begin the defense of their title on Monday evening with a trip to Bologna.

New coach Rafa Benitez will been especially keen to get off to a winning start in Serie A after losing 2-0 to Athletico Madrid in the UEFA Super Cup on Friday.