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Jude Bellingham stars as Real Madrid defeats Napoli in the Champions League

By George Ramsay, CNN

(CNN) — Real Madrid continued its winning start in the Champions League by coming from behind to defeat Napoli 3-2 on Tuesday.

Midfielder Jude Bellingham scored his eighth goal in nine appearances for Los Blancos after Vinícius Jr. had canceled out Leo Østigård’s opener for the home side.

Piotr Zieliński’s penalty made it 2-2 in the second half but an own goal from Alex Meret – the result of a thunderous strike from Federico Valverde – ensured that Madrid left Naples with three points.

“We put on a complete and serious performance,” said manager Carlo Ancelotti.

“We played very well in the first half and after their goal we did very well between the lines and created chances … We were up against it for 10 or 15 minutes and then we regained control and scored towards the end.”

After early chances for Madrid, Napoli took the lead from a corner when Natan headed onto the bar and Østigård scored with the follow up.

Madrid responded midway through the first half, Vinícius finishing well after Bellingham had intercepted Giovanni Di Lorenzo’s loose pass.

The Englishman then made it 2-1 with a surging run through the heart of Napoli’s defense, cutting inside a defender and shooting past Meret to continue the excellent start to his Real Madrid career.

Zieliński equalized from the penalty spot when a video assistant review ruled that Nacho had illegally – and perhaps harshly – handled the ball during a sliding challenge, but Valverde’s powerful strike from outside the box meant that Madrid had the final say, the shot cannoning off the crossbar and bouncing into the net off the back of Meret’s head.

The result puts Madrid top of Group C, three points ahead of Napoli and Braga. The Portuguese team came from two goals down to defeat Union Berlin 3-2 in dramatic fashion on Tuesday thanks to André Castro’s injury-time winner.

Following his team’s win, Ancelotti was full of praise for his new signing Bellingham.

“I’m surprised he’s only 20 years old because he looks like he’s 30 because of his character and attitude,” Ancelotti said.

“He is always focused on the game and knows what he has to do. It’s unusual for a 20-year-old. He has a lot of quality, physical strength and skill. He surprises me like he does everyone else.”

Madrid plays Osasuna in LaLiga on Saturday, while Napoli has an important Serie A game against Fiorentina on Sunday.

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