Real Madrid oust Napoli to reach Champions League quarters

The Spanish giants hold a two-goal advantage over Napoli after winning 3-1 in the first leg

Although "BBC" deceptive partnership Cristiano Ronaldo, Karim Benzema and Gareth Bale have all struggled together this season, expect Zidane to play his stars in big games.

After their win in the first leg against Napoli, Real Madrid will try to guarantee their chances to qualify to the next round when they face the Italian club tonight in the UEFA Champions League.

But Madrid skipper Sergio Ramos' two goals early in the second half killed the tie, before Alvaro Morata put the icing on the cake in injury time. An embarrassing home defeat to Atlanta was followed by a loss to Juventus in the Italian Cup semifinal but a thrilling away win over Roma at the weekend suggests the Gil Azzurri aren't throwing in the towel yet. It's going to suck when Ronaldo converts a stoppage time penalty that gives Real the 2-1 win.

They have an extremely potent attacking trio in Lorenzo Insigne, Jose Callejon and Dries Mertens and their speed on the counter will prove crucial against a leaky Madrid defence.


Real Madrid had one foot in the Champions League quarter-finals as they travelled to Naples for their second-leg.

The goal came in the 24th minute as Hamsik's early pass picked out the run of Mertens down the left and the Belgian fired a shot low across goal and in off the post.

Bayern's opening goal in that game came after just 11 minutes and Arsenal have a strong recent trend of giving away a goal just as the game is getting started. However, they didn't look like it from the jump. "The atmosphere will be incredible but our motivation will be huge and I think we will play a very good game". Five points dropped in their last four league games owing to defensive lapses have seen them overtaken by Barcelona at the top of La Liga.

Real Madrid have progressed from each of their last eight Champions League ties in the Last 16 or beyond when they've won the first leg. "In simple terms, we have about a three per cent chance of success, but it's better than nothing". Upon kick-off, the stadium was raucous, Sarri's press was stifling, and Real Madrid were getting suffocated trying to escape their own half where they were hounded by blue shirts.

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