Dimitar Berbatov became only the fourth player to score five goals in a Premier League match to help Manchester United thump Blackburn Rovers 7-1 and go top of the standings for the first time this season.
Borussia Dortmund made it 12 wins out of 14 in the Bundesliga while in Spain, the weekend's action was a mere prelude to Monday's Barcelona v Real Madrid Clasico at Nou Camp.
Manchester United went top of the Premier League for the first time this season with a 7-1 rout of Blackburn Rovers, including five goals from Bulgarian striker Dimitar Berbatov who ended a 10-match drought.
United's win took them to 31 points while champions Chelsea, having lost three of their last four league games, could only draw 1-1 at Newcastle United.
That left Chelsea on 29 points, level with Arsenal who won 4-2 at Aston Villa. Manchester City are fourth on 26 after drawing 1-1 at Stoke City.
With West Bromwich Albion winning 4-1 at Everton and Wolverhampton Wanderers beating Sunderland 3-2 there were 41 goals scored in the weekend's 10 games, matching the Premier League record, all 20 teams scoring at least one.
Olympique Marseille became the latest Ligue 1 leaders although they are only three points ahead of eighth-placed Brest in a remarkably close table.
Brest, top only two weeks ago, dropped down the table again after their match with Racing Lens was abandoned due to snow.
Marseille thumped Montpellier 4-0 and lead on goal difference from Lille who drew 1-1 with Girondins Bordeaux .
Leaders AC Milan dropped points for the first time in five games in a 1-1 draw at Sampdoria where Giampaolo Pazzini cancelled out Robinho's opener and Zlatan Ibrahimovic was, for once, not on the scoresheet.
Second-placed Lazio failed to profit, drawing 1-1 at home with Catania to stay three points behind.
Champions Inter Milan are seven adrift of Milan after Dejan Stankovic bagged a hat-trick in a 5-2 win over Parma which further eased the pressure on coach Rafael Benitez.
Goals from Marcos Senna, Santi Cazorla and Nilmar gave Villarreal a 3-0 win at 10-man Real Zaragoza on Saturday as they trimmed the gap with second-placed Barcelona to four points in La Liga.
Champions Barca host unbeaten leaders Real Madrid at the Nou Camp on Monday (2000 GMT) and third-placed Villarreal seized their chance to cut the advantage held by the big two before the eagerly-anticipated "Clasico".
Borussia Dortmund cruised past bottom-placed Borussia Moenchengladbach 4-1 to remain seven points clear of Mainz at the top with their 12th win in 14 games.
Champions Bayern Munich moved up to fifth spot on 23 points after crushing Eintracht Frankfurt be the same score.
Hugo Almeida scored a hat-trick to give Werder Bremen a 3-0 win over St Pauli which stopped their freefall down the table although he was also sent off.
Leaders Porto were held to a 1-1 away draw by Sporting in Saturday's "Classico". Chilean forward Jaime Valdez opened the scoring for Sporting in the 38th minute and Colombia striker Radamel Falcao equalised with a tap-in in the 58th.
Second-placed Benfica took the chance to cut the gap to the leaders by beating Beira-Mar 3-1 away, although they are still eight points adrift.
Paraguay forward Oscar Cardozo marked his return after a lengthy injury by scoring two and providing another for Argentine Javier Saviola as South American players made their mark.
Mido and Miralem Sulejmani scored second-half goals for a mediocre Ajax Amsterdam in a 2-0 Dutch League win at VVV Venlo on Sunday to end a goalless and winless streak of three league matches.
Mido broke the deadlock after 62 minutes when he netted a blocked shot from Eyong Enoh and eight minutes later Sulejmani's deflected shot went under goalkeeper Kevin Begois.
PSV Eindhoven remain on top with 34 points from 16 matches after Friday's 4-2 defeat at NAC Breda. They lead on goal difference from Twente Enschede who beat NEC Nijmegen 4-2 on Saturday. Ajax climbed to third on 31.
Djibril Cisse scored two late goals, taking his tally to 12 for the season, as Panathinaikos returned to the top of the Super League with a 2-0 away win at Kerkyra.
The win moved Panathinaikos level on 27 points with rivals Olympiakos Pireaus, who lost 1-0 to AEK Athens on Saturday, but the Greens lead the table on their head-to-head record.