Real Madrid Advances to the Champions League Quarterfinals

Real Madrid secured their spot in the Champions League quarter-finals by clinching a 2-1 aggregate victory over RB Leipzig in the last 16.

In a closely contested match reminiscent of the first leg, Leipzig squandered numerous opportunities while Vinicius Junior capitalised on a crucial chance, converting Jude Bellingham’s pass to give Real a 2-0 lead with 25 minutes remaining. Leipzig managed to pull one back three minutes later through captain Willi Orban’s header, injecting renewed hope into the Bundesliga side.

Despite Leipzig’s spirited efforts to level the score, including Dani Olmo’s close attempt that struck the crossbar in injury time, Real Madrid maintained their composure to secure their advancement. This marks Real’s 12th quarter-final appearance in the past 14 seasons as they pursue their record-extending 15th European title.

Carlo Ancelotti’s team awaits the draw for the quarterfinals, set to take place on Friday, March 15 (11:00 GMT).

While holding a narrow lead from the first leg, Real faced pressure to demonstrate their quality and secure a victory at home. Ancelotti emphasised the need to remain focused, wary of Leipzig’s threat, but Real struggled to assert dominance throughout the match.

Despite the crowd’s support at the Bernabeu, Real Madrid lacked creativity and precision, often conceding possession cheaply. However, their attacking prowess, led by Vinicius and Bellingham, eventually paid off, with Vinicius’s clinical finish sealing their progression.

Former England midfielder Owen Hargreaves acknowledged Real’s below-par performance but highlighted the impact of world-class players in decisive moments, reflecting on Vinicius’s match-winning goal.

Leipzig showcased fearlessness and bravery, launching 20 shots at Real’s goal, but their inability to capitalise on clear opportunities proved costly. Lois Openda’s lack of composure in front of goal hindered Leipzig’s chances of levelling the tie, ultimately resulting in their elimination from the tournament.

Despite their valiant efforts, Leipzig fell short of advancing to the quarterfinals for the fourth consecutive season, while Real Madrid prepares to face their next challenge in the competition.

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