The former Borussia Dortmund player netted a stunning solo goal in Naples, contributing to their 3-2 victory over the reigning Italian champions.
Jude Bellingham notched his eighth goal of the season as Real Madrid put an end to Napoli’s impressive 13-game undefeated streak in Champions League matches at home, securing a thrilling 3-2 victory on Tuesday. Although the outcome hung in the balance, Bellingham’s outstanding performance and Federico Valverde’s stunning strike proved decisive against the Italian champions.
Napoli seized the advantage with their initial opportunity of the evening. Kvicha Kvaratskhelia delivered a corner into the box, catching Real Madrid goalkeeper Kepa Arrizabalaga off guard. The ball ricocheted off the crossbar and fortuitously landed for Leo Ostigard to nod into an unguarded net.
However, Real Madrid quickly retaliated. Jude Bellingham seized possession just outside the Napoli penalty area, then set up Vinicius Jr for a splendid strike from a narrow angle. Shortly thereafter, the English international propelled Madrid into the lead with a magnificent solo effort, gracefully maneuvering through the Napoli defense and curling a shot beyond the reach of Alex Meret.
Napoli managed to equalize once more in the second half, with Piotr Zielinski confidently converting a penalty awarded for a questionable Nacho handball. As the game progressed, Real Madrid gained an edge and justified their victory as Federico Valverde unleashed a 25-yard strike that struck the bar and deflected into the net off Alex Meret’s back. Despite late pressure from the home side, Madrid held firm to clinch a crucial away win, positioning them favorably for the Champions League knockout stage.
Goalkeeper and defense
Kepa Arrizabalaga (5/10):
He committed a costly error that led to Napoli’s initial goal. His performance was generally unconvincing, although he did make a sharp reflex save to deny Osimhen.
Dani Carvajal (5/10):
Facing the formidable Kvaratskhelia, Carvajal had a challenging evening as the Georgian consistently maneuvered around the right-back throughout the match.
Unfortunate to concede a penalty, as it appeared to be an unjust handball call. Nonetheless, he delivered a reliable performance in all other aspects of the game.
Antonio Rudiger (8/10):
Engaged in an impressive battle with Osimhen, emerging victorious in crucial moments. Madrid’s defense remained solid and composed with him in the lineup.
Eduardo Camavinga (5/10):
Given a start in the less-preferred left-back position over Mendy, but received an early booking. Subsequently, he was rightfully substituted after an hour.
Aurelien Tchouameni (8/10):
Effectively controlled the midfield space and had a chance to score in the first half. He has solidified his role as the No. 6 this season.
Federico Valverde (7/10):
Although he had a somewhat sloppy night on the ball, Valverde ‘scored’ the winning goal and played a crucial role in covering ground.
Toni Kroos (6/10):
Delivered some impressive passes but didn’t quite dominate the game as he usually does. A rest may be needed.
Jude Bellingham (9/10):
Provided the assist for Madrid’s first goal and scored an incredible second. He could have added another, but his performance was exceptional, cementing his reputation as an outstanding English talent.
Had difficulties getting into the game and occasionally attempted to take on too much. Still hasn’t scored this season.
Vinicius Jr (8/10):
Seemed a bit off his usual sharpness until he netted the equalizer for Madrid. Improved as the game went on and had several promising opportunities. His full fitness will be crucial for the team.
Subs & Manager
Ferland Mendy (6/10):
Replaced Camavinga and made a crucial clearance late on.
Luka Modric (6/10):
Offered a solid shift off the bench, which is pretty much his role these days.
Struggled to get involved, but certainly had the legs to give Madrid life late on
Dani Ceballos (N/A):
Not enough time to make an impact.
Carlo Ancelotti (6/10):
Benched Modric, and opted to start Camavinga at left-back. Madrid controlled the game early, but lost it when Napoli offered more of an attacking threat in the second half.