Connect with us

UEFA Champions League

Serie A champions, Napoli go down at home



Champions League - Group C - Napoli v Real Madrid - Stadio Diego Armando Maradona, Naples, Italy - October 3, 2023. The rise before the fall as Napoli's Leo Ostigard celebrates scoring their first goal REUTERS/Ciro De Luca Acquire Licensing Rights

Jude Bellingham’s efforts produced two goals during an eight-minute stretch of the first half in Real Madrid’s 3-2 win at Serie A champion Napoli on Tuesday in the Champions League.

Madrid’s new standout first intercepted a pass from Napoli captain Giovanni Di Lorenzo and immediately set up Vinicius Junior for an equalizer at the Stadio Diego Armando Maradona.

Then the England international slalomed through Napoli’s defense from near midfield before slotting in a goal that was reminiscent of the way Maradona, also an attacking midfielder, used to perform in the stadium now named after him.

Madrid’s winner was charged as an own goal by Napoli goalkeeper Alex Meret following a powerful striker from Federico Valverde that deflected off Di Lorenzo before hitting the crossbar. A leaping Meret then had the last touch but couldn’t prevent it from going into his net.

Leo Ostigard had put Napoli ahead early on with a header by leaping over Dani Carvajal.


Napoli midfielder Piotr Zielinski scored a controversial penalty after the break to make it 2-2.

Madrid tops Group C with six points, Napoli and Braga have three points each and Union Berlin is last with zero.

Braga beat Berlin 3-2 earlier.




Kunle Solaja is the author of landmark books on sports and journalism as well as being a multiple award-winning journalist and editor of long standing. He is easily Nigeria’s foremost soccer diarist and Africa's most capped FIFA World Cup journalist, having attended all FIFA World Cup finals from Italia ’90 to Qatar 2022. He was honoured at the Qatar 2022 World Cup by FIFA and AIPS.

Continue Reading