UEFA Champions League

Injury-hit Spurs beat Dortmund, holders edge Ajax

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  • Tottenham brush aside Borussia Dortmund
  • Holders Real Madrid edge Ajax in Amsterdam
  • Sergio Ramos reaches 600 appearances with Real Madrid in all competitions

Despite not having star forward Harry Kane and midfield creator Dele Alli due to injury, Tottenham Hotspur overpowered Borussia Dortmund 3-0 in the first leg of their UEFA Champions League Round of 16 clash.

Second-half goals from Son Heungmin, Jan Vertonghen and Fernando Llorente led Mauricio Pochettino's charges to an impressive victory that sets the north London side up nicely heading into the second leg on 5 March.

After a fairly evenly-played but goalless first half, Son scored just over a minute after the break with a superb volleyed finish from Vertonghen's pinpoint accurate cross. The Belgian went from provider to goalscorer in the 83rd minute when he latched on to Serge Aurier's cross.

Substitute Llorente applied the icing on the cake for Tottenham three minutes later as he glanced in a header at the near post from a Christian Eriksen corner kick to send the Wembley crowd into a frenzy, sealing Spurs' second-ever knockout stage Champions League win.

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Champions eke out win in Amsterdam

A late goal from substitute Marco Asensio helped Real Madrid narrowly defeat a determined and young Ajax squad on Wednesday night, as Los Blancos prevailed 2-1 in the first leg of their Champions League Round of 16 match-up at the Amsterdam Arena.

It looked as if the hosts had taken the lead through Nicolas Tagliafico’s scrambling header in the 37th minute, but the first use of a Video Assistant Referee (VAR) in Champions League history deemed the Argentinian fullback offside.

Karim Benzema put Real Madrid ahead in the 60th minute with a tidy finish set up by a slashing run from Vinicius Junior. Fifteen minutes later Ajax drew level courtesy of Hakim Ziyech, but then Dani Carvajal picked out Asensio with a dipping cross and the 23-year-old made no mistake with his finish, putting the reigning champions ahead for good in the 87th minute.

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600

Real Madrid captain and four-time FIFA Club World Cup champion Sergio Ramos made his 600th appearance for the club in all competitions, placing him seventh all-time in club history.

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