Five-Star Real Madrid Seal Top Spot With Celtic Drubbing


European champions Real Madrid made light work of Celtic with a 5-1 win to progress to the Champions League last 16 as Group F winners on Wednesday.

Madrid quickly assumed a dominant lead with Luka Modric and Rodrygo netting first-half penalties, both given for handballs, while Josip Juranovic missed one for the bottom-of-the-group Scots.

Marco Asensio netted the third early in the second half on what proved a stroll for the record 14-time winners, Vinicius Junior turned home the fourth from Fede Valverde’s cross and the Uruguayan smashed in a fifth himself.

The comprehensive victory over Ange Postecoglou’s side, who pulled one back with an impressive Jota free-kick, left them a point above second-place Leipzig, with the German side beating Shakhtar Donetsk 4-0.

Celtic offered Madrid not one, but two, helping hands, and they were grateful to get back to winning ways after suffering their first defeat of the season in all competitions against Leipzig last week, and then drawing with Girona in La Liga.

“A game like this with a lot of goals, getting back to winning ways, that was the most important thing, to finish top of the group. It was a great day,” Rodrygo told Movistar.

“(The knock-outs) will be hard again, it will be difficult, there are no easy teams left, they can all make life hard for us, whoever we get.”

Carlo Ancelotti earned the 103rd Champions League win of his management career, overtaking former Manchester United coach Alex Ferguson as the all-time record holder.

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