Wednesday 24 January 2018

Ronaldo pulls real strings

Cristiano Ronaldo scored a goal and set up another for Mesut Ozil less than a minute later as Real Madrid beat AC Milan 2-0 to seize control of Group G.

Jose Mourinho's young Real side, playing with energy and pace, dominated an ageing Milan team and the La Liga giants cemented their place at the top of the group with three wins from three matches.

After a fast-paced opening, Ronaldo struck in the 13th minute with a fierce free-kick that flew through Milan's poor attempt at a wall.

With the visitors reeling, the Portuguese winger then sprinted in from the left wing to feed Ozil on the edge of the penalty area and the German international's first-time shot balooned up off the back of visiting central defender Daniele Bonera and into the net.

Meanwhile, Samuel Inkoom blasted in just before half-time to help Basel shock Roma 3-1 in the Olympic Stadium in Rome.

The visitors took the lead when Marco Streller intelligently headed the ball back for Switzerland striker Alexander Frei to thump into the net from the edge of the area on 12 minutes.

Roma responded well and Marco Borriello, who had earlier missed a good chance, equalised after a superb first-time ball from strike partner Francesco Totti.

The hosts continued to be sloppy, though, and were punished when Ghana World Cup midfielder Inkoom grabbed the lead again for Basel with a fierce angled drive. Substitute Cabral grabbed a probably undeserved third in injury-time.

Elsewhere, Marseille kept their Champions League hopes alive but failed to impress as they laboured to a 1-0 home win against Slovakians Zilina.

Defender Souleymane Diawara headed in three minutes into the second half to leave the Ligue 1 champions third in Group F, six points adrift of Chelsea.

Irish Independent

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