A detalied look at Real Madrid’s 3-1 win over Napoli in the first leg of the UEFA Champions League round of 16 match.
A clinical performance from Real Madrid helped them overcome Napoli’s challenge in the first leg of the UEFA Champions League round of 16 tie. The final score might look a bit one sided but it was far from it as the Italian side provided a stern test to the reigning champions. Lorenzo Insigne opened the scoring for the visitors in the opening 10 minutes as shocking positioning from goalkeeper Keylor Navas saw Insigne score from 40 yards.
Karim Benzema levelled the proceedings with a towering header 10 minutes later and at half-time, both sides were still vying to take a hold of the game. Toni Kroos gave Real Madrid a lead with a trademark finish after some neat footwork from Cristiano Ronaldo, while Casemiro scored the third with a belter of a finish.
A dipping 30-yard volley saw Napoli’s resistance finally come to an end as Real head to Naples with a strong two-goal lead.
Napoli have never advanced to the last eight of the Champions League in their history and that inexperience showed against Real Madrid last night. An early away goal could not set the ball rolling for Maurizio Sarri’s men, as a professional second-half display from the hosts saw them take a two-goal lead to the San Paolo in two weeks’ time.
Zinedine Zidane set up his team perfectly last night and made some important tweaks in the game to change the course of the game. The manager noticed Napoli’s weakness of the attackers cutting in from the flanks and deployed Cristiano Ronaldo to take full advantage of that.
The Italian were defending deep which left space in front of their 18-yard box which was fully utilised by Toni Kroos and Casemiro. These little adjustments saw Real Madrid rekindle their dream of becoming the first club in the Champions League era to retain the coveted cup.
(as cited Sportskeeda)