Sheriff 0-3 Real Madrid

Photo: Sergei Gapon / Getty Images

Real Madrid avenged their earlier Champions League defeat to Sheriff Tiraspol with a decisive 3-0 victory on Wednesday night at Sheriff’s Stadium.

David Alaba, Toni Kroos and Karim Benzema all planted the ball to the net to give Los Blancos three points and officially a spot in coming February’s knockout stage. It was also sweet vengeance for the shocking 2-1 loss suffered by Real Madrid against Sheriff at the Estadio Santiago Bernabeu.

Carlo Ancelotti went with as strong a starting XI as possible. After early moments of brilliance from Rodrygo and Benzema, Alaba would open the scoring in style on the partial hour mark with a freekick that went blazing over Sheriff goalkeeper Giorgos Athanasiadis.

Moments before half time, the advantage was doubled and again in elegant form, with some quick end setting up from Toni Kroos, who impeccably placed his shot in off the bar with his right foot. The second half saw Real Madrid come out looking to put their hands on Sheriff’s neck and the lead was stretched to 3-0 shortly before the hour mark when Ferland Mendy cut outside and played a pass to Benzema, who also fired in a right-footer.

With the three goal bumper, Ancelotti went to his bench, bringing on Marcelo for Mendy, followed by Lucas Vazquez for Dani Carvajal and Nacho for an injured Alaba. Sheriff didn’t throw in the towel, as they nearly pulled a thing back, with Thibaut Courtois making a save on an Adama Traore’s shot that also led to a Cristiano attempt that hit the post.

That would prove to be the last scoring chance for the home side, as Real Madrid calmly saw out the final twinkles to punch their place in the round of 16.

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