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CL PHOTOS: Chelsea perform heroics to enter quarters

Last updated on: March 15, 2012 10:07 IST

CL PHOTOS: Chelsea perform heroics to enter quarters

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Chelsea's old guard masterminded one of the club's greatest European escapes to reach the Champions League quarter-finals on Wednesday, beating Napoli 4-1 after extra time at Stamford Bridge to edge an electrifying tie 5-4 on aggregate.

Serbian Branislav Ivanovic smashed home the winning goal in the 105th minute of an enthralling clash to keep the English flag flying in the competition after both Manchester clubs and Arsenal had fallen by the wayside.

Trailing 3-1 from the first leg, it was Chelsea's much-criticised 30 somethings who provided the inspiration having struggled domestically under recently sacked coach Andre Villas-Boas.

Didier Drogba opened the scoring and captain John Terry's header made it 2-0 just after the interval only for Napoli to regain the advantage through Gokhan Inler's low drive.


Image: Didier Drogba of Chelsea celebrates as he scores their first goal
Photographs: Getty Images

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'We showed what Chelsea are made of tonight'

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Frank Lampard's penalty 15 minutes from time made it 4-4 on aggregate to send the tie into extra time and it was the 34-year-old Drogba who again showed his class, providing the perfect cut back for Ivanovic to send Chelsea through.

"He finished it unbelievably, like a striker really," Lampard told ITV.

"It was a symbol of the team's spirit, the way he finished that. A performance like that could change our season. We're just happy to be in the hat. If we play with that ability tonight we can take on anyone."

Interim coach Roberto Di Matteo jumped for joy on the bench as Chelsea kept their dream of a first Champions League triumph alive and ended Napoli's hopes of reaching the last eight for the first time. Only AC Milan from Italy now remain.

"This could top them all for sure," said Terry, whose side lie fifth in the Premier League. "We showed what Chelsea are made of tonight."


Image: Frank Lampard of Chelsea and Edinson Cavani of Napoli jump for the ball during the UEFA Champions League
Photographs: Getty Images

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Ivanovic seals the tie for the Blues with glee

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Chelsea had looked cumbersome with Drogba, a frustrated figure upfront but the Ivorian showed why he has been such a feared predator over the years in the Champions League when he put his side ahead after 28 minutes.

Ramires cut in from the left flank and curled a menacing cross into the area that was met by the sweetest of headers from Drogba to give De Sanctis no chance.

Michael Essien then sent a shot narrowly wide as Chelsea ended the half on top.

Chelsea began the second half as they had ended the first and within three minutes Terry combined with fellow old warrior Lampard to make it 2-0, arcing a textbook header beyond De Sanctis from the midfielder's corner.

With 15 minutes to go Chelsea were gifted their third goal when substitute Andrea Dossena needlessly handled and Chelsea's trusty penalty taker Lampard made no mistake from the spot to make it 4-4 on aggregate.

Extra time was wide open before Ivanovic sealed the tie with glee.


Image: Branislav Ivanovic of Chelsea battles with Ezequiel Lavezzi of Napoli
Photographs: Getty Images

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Real Madrid coast past CSKA into quarters

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Real Madrid strolled into the quarter-finals of the Champions League after Gonzalo Higuain, Cristiano Ronaldo and Karim Benzema scored in a 4-1 win at home to CSKA Moscow on Wednesday that put them through 5-2 on aggregate.

Jose Mourinho's side took a deserved lead in the 26th minute when Sami Khedira sent Kaka clear on the left and the Brazilian crossed for Higuain to poke the ball into the net.

They doubled their lead 10 minutes into the second half after CSKA goalkeeper Sergei Chepchugov could only divert Ronaldo's long-range strike on to a post and in and Benzema followed up his own shot to net Real's third 20 minutes from time moments after coming off the bench. Ronaldo tapped in a fourth in stoppage time.

Zoran Tosic rewarded the travelling CSKA fans with a goal 13 minutes from time when he rounded Pepe and lashed the ball high past Iker Casillas from just outside the area, prompting a furious reaction from Mourinho on the side of the pitch.


Image: Cristiano Ronaldo celebrates with team-mates
Photographs: Getty Images

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Mourinho on course to become the only manager to win the trophy with three clubs

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The result on a balmy night in the Spanish capital secured Real their place in Friday's draw for the last eight as the La Liga leaders seek a first continental title since 2002.

The victory kept coach Jose Mourinho on course to become the only manager to win the trophy with three clubs.

"I know if we get them in the quarters, semi-finals or final, they will be a great opponent," Mourinho told Sky Sports about the prospect of facing former side Chelsea.

The pair join holders Barcelona, seven-times winners AC Milan, Bayern Munich, Olympique Marseille, Benfica and novices APOEL Nicosia in the last eight with the open draw -- meaning any team can meet any other -- being made on Friday.

The two-legged quarter-finals take place on March 27, 28 and April 3, 4.


Image: Real Madrid coach Jose Mourinho
Photographs: Getty Images

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