Real Madrid to play Napoli at last-16 round of Champions League

  • Libyan Express + Agencies |
  • Tuesday 7 March 2017

Real Madrid’s Karim Benzema, right, fights for the ball with Napoli’s Kalidou Koulibaly during the Champions League round of 16, first leg, soccer match between Real Madrid and Napoli at the Santiago Bernabeu stadium in Madrid, Wednesday Feb. 15, 2017. (AP Photo/Francisco Seco)

BBC – Cristiano Ronaldo and Gareth Bale have been included in Real Madrid’s squad for Tuesday’s Champions League last-16 second-leg against Napoli after missing Saturday’s 4-1 win over Eibar.

Ronaldo has recovered from a niggle and fellow forward Bale was suspended for the match.

Central defender Raphael Varane is out with a thigh problem.

Napoli, 3-1 down after the first leg, have winger Dries Mertens available who has recovered from a knock.

Mertens scored twice in the 2-1 Serie A win at Roma at the weekend, as Napoli narrowed the gap on the second-placed side to two points.

Napoli coach Maurizio Sarri said his side had a “3%” chance of overturning the deficit when Real visit the Stadio San Paolo.

“It’s an almost impossible game for us because they score all the time,” said Sarri.

Meanwhile, the coach said a three-week silence with club president Aurelio di Laurentiis had come to an end.

Di Laurentiis imposed a media blackout on Sarri and the team after their 3-1 first-leg loss. However, Sarri said his conversation with the prominent Italian film producer was predominantly about cinema.

“We were united by necessity, now the common aim is to do well,” said Sarri.

“In nearly half an hour, we talked about cinema for 28 minutes and football for 30 seconds, but only in general about future situations.”


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