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Real Madrid Through To Champions League Knockout Stages

Real Madrid maintained their perfect record in Group D and strolled into the round of 16, while Inter Milan and Bayern Münich both took giant steps towards the knockout stages.

Two goals from Cristiano Ronaldo in each half, a trademark free-kick and a penalty, were more than enough for Real Madrid as they beat Lyon 2-0 to make it four wins out of four in the Champions League this season, and they join Barcelona and AC Milan in looking up a round of 16 place with two games to spare. Behind Madrid are Ajax, who turned on the style in a 4-0 win against bottom club Dinamo Zagreb. Later this month, Ajax will meet Lyon in France in a game that could decide who finishes second in the group.

A Mario Gomez hat-trick helped Bayern Munich junp out to a 3-0 lead against Napoli, but two goals from Federico Fernández caused some nervous final moments for the German side. But Bayern held on and now need a point from their last two matches to advance to the knockout stages. It took them a couple of games to get going in the Champions League but Manchester City are now second in Group A, two points ahead of Napoli, after an impressive 3-0 win at Villarreal. City play Napoli later this month and a victory will assure their progression in the tournament.

Despite losing the first game at home to Trabzonspor, Inter are now four points clear in Group B after a 2-1 home win against Lille. Veterans Walter Samuel and Diego Milito scoring the goal for Inter. opened the scoring, and Diego Milito struck a second which proved vital after Túlio de Melo’s late effort. Trabzonspor and CSKA Moscow both sit on five points with the Russian side having the head-to-head edge after tonight’s goalless draw.

In Group C, SL Benfica looked like they had qualified for the knockout stages when Rodrigo gave them the lead against Basel. But a Benjamin Huggel goal meant that the points were shared, a result that allowed Manchester United to pull level with Benfica at the top of the section, three points ahead of Basel, after beatung Otelul 2-0.

Group A
FC Bayern München 3-2 SSC Napoli
Villarreal CF 0-3 Manchester City FC

Group B
Trabzonspor AŞ 0-0 PFC CSKA Moskva
FC Internazionale Milano 2-1 LOSC Lille Métropole

Group C
Manchester United FC 2-0 FC Oţelul Galaţi
SL Benfica 1-1 FC Basel 1893

Group D
Olympique Lyonnais 0-2 Real Madrid CF
AFC Ajax 4-0 Dinamo Zagreb