Karim Benzema scored a brace as the Real Madrid engine came to life when it mattered most to beat Borussia Monchengladbach 2-0 and book a place in the Champion League Round of 16.
The Los Blancos went into the match needing a victory to be sure of a knockout ticket, and they impressed on the night.
Sergio Ramos, who has been out since the last international break, was named in the starting lineup to partner Raphael Varane, and he delivered as expected.
Zinedine Zidane's men started the match in spectacular fashion, with Karim Benzema finding the back of the net through Benzema after just nine minutes.
Karim Benzema has now scored 70 Champions League goals, one shy of Raúl's all-time tally. Respect. pic.twitter.com/aUc0qedhi3— Futaa.com (@Futaacom) December 9, 2020
Madrid controlled the entire first half and their efforts were rewarded with a second goal just after the half-hour mark in trademark fashion.
Rodrygo with a wonderful assist!— Real Madrid Analysis (@rmdanalysis) December 9, 2020
Luka Modric then missed a chance to make it 3-0 in the 39th minute, crushing his effort against the right post when it was easier to score than miss.
The Croat however found the net in the 43rd minute, but his celebrations, and those of the team, were cut short after the effort was ruled out for offside.
Benzema, Rodrygo, and Toni Kroos all came close in the second half, but could not add a third as Los Blancos picked a 2-0 win to advance as group winners.
In another match on the night, Antonio Conte's Inter Milan failed to proceed from the Group stage for the second year running, after drawing blanks at home against Shakhtar Donetsk.
Inter needed a win to progress but could not find a way past the Ukrainians, who will drop to the Europa League.
Meanwhile, Inter have surprisingly finished fourth in the group, which they were favorites to progress along with Real Madrid.
In another match, a Mario Hermoso goal and a late Yannick Carrasco striker gave Atletico Madrid a 2-0 win that guaranteed them a place in the next round as Runners up behind Bayern Munich.
- Real Madrid 2-0 Gladbach
- Inter 0-0 Shakhtar
- Man City 3-0 Marseille
- Bayern 2-0 Lokomotiv
- Salzburg 0-2 Atletico Madrid
- Olympiacos 0-2 Porto