Real Madrid see off spirited Celtic to begin Champions League defence

REAL MADRID SHRUGGED off the loss of Karim Benzema to an early injury as the holders got their defence of the Champions League off to a winning start with a 3-0 victory at Celtic.

The Scottish champions were left to rue not making the most of a bright start as Callum McGregor rattled the post.

However, the Hoops had no response once Vinicius Junior, scorer of the winner in last season’s final, broke the deadlock with a calm finish on 56 minutes.

Four minutes later a nonchalant finish from Luka Modric with the outside of his foot doubled Madrid’s lead before Eden Hazard struck to continue a 100 percent start to the season for Carlo Ancelotti’s men.

Celtic had begun the night with a perfect record this season, including a 4-0 demolition of local rivals and Europa League finalists Rangers on Saturday.

But in their first Champions League group match for five years, Ange Postecoglou’s men were given a harsh lesson of the need to take their chances in the step up to the highest level in European football.

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