Ramos rises, Madrid through

Sergio Ramos scored two headers in quick succession as Real Madrid ultimately defeated Napoli 3-1 on Tuesday to reach the Champions League quarter-finals.

The big boys returned for Madrid as they looked to finish the job they started against Napoli, who were similarly at 100 percent.

The Partenopei flew out of the traps and applied immense pressure on Madrid, who struggled to even leave their half of the pitch.

Marek Hamsik almost caught out Navas at his near post directly from a corner, before shooting just wide from the fallout.

Having netted a wonder strike in the first leg, Lorenzo Insigne unleashed a piledriver from 20 yards out, but Keylor Navas tipped it around the post.

Just when it seemed Madrid had put their tough start behind them, however, Dries Mertens was slipped in behind Los Blancos’ defence and angled a finish across Navas.

With that, the holders had conceded 12 goals in the 2016-17 Champions League, double the total they let in last season.

Nonetheless, Ronaldo rounded a defender and Pepe Reina in Napoli’s penalty area but could only find the base of the goalkeeper’s post with his finish.

Yet Napoli too hit the woodwork when Mertens turned his marked in the Madrid box and pulled a shot across Navas.

Karim Benzema lashed a half-volley from a square pass almost immediately after the restart, but it landed in Reina’s side-netting.

However, Ramos time took place significantly earlier than usual as the defender climbed highest to power a header past Reina from a corner.

Six minutes later, Ramos bagged himself another header, albeit helped in with a deflection, to silence the home fans, many of whom had been in the stadium for six hours prior.

Los Merengues coasted through the second half for most part, with no more chances until 10 minutes remaining as Dani Carvajal played keepy-uppy in the Napoli box but couldn’t keep his close-range volley down.

A third goal would come via Morata as Ronaldo’s shot was parried by Reina onto a plate for the substitute to drive into an empty net.

Napoli 1-3 Real Madrid (2-6 agg.)

Mertens 24 (N) Ramos 51, 57, Morata 90

Napoli: Reina; Hysaj, Albiol, Koulibaly, Ghoulam; Allan (Rog 56), Diawara, Hamsik (Zielinski 75); Callejon, Mertens, Insigne (Milik 70)

Real Madrid: Navas; Carvajal, Pepe, Ramos, Marcelo; Modric (Isco 80), Casemiro, Kroos; Bale (Lucas 68), Benzema (Morata 77), Ronaldo

Referee: Cakir (TUR)

Tags Napoli