Two victories in four days over rival Barcelona propelled Real Madrid to first place in the AP global soccer rankings.
Cristiano Ronaldo's role in Real's victories was not enough to make him player of the week in The Associated Press survey of 22 global soccer journalists. Ronaldo was beaten by Gareth Bale of Tottenham, who has been scoring regular match-winning goals.
Shinji Kagawa became the first Japanese player to enter the top three in the player rankings following his hat trick for Manchester United.
James Porteous of The South China Morning Post in Hong Kong says Bale's three goals in two games made him a natural for top spot.