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Football

Real respond with a four-goal haul


MADRID, Spain (Reuters) -- Real Madrid recovered from a goal down to claim a convincing 4-2 win over Monaco in a pulsating Champions League quarterfinal, first leg at the Bernabeu.

Monaco snatched the lead late in the first half when center-back Sebastien Squillaci took advantage of hesitation in defense to poke home from close range.

Real moved up a gear in the second half with goals from Ivan Helguera, Zinedine Zidane, Luis Figo and the returning Ronaldo.

"We dominated the first half but didn't make the most of our opportunities," said Real coach Carlos Queiroz whose team are chasing a 10th European crown.

"The second half we took our chances and got the goals. We can now go forward to the second leg in a relaxed fashion.

"We will not be changing our tactics....you can still expect to see a creative Real Madrid."

The equalizer came seven minutes after the break when substitute center-back Helguera bundled in from three meters after a David Beckham corner had panicked the Monaco defense.

After squandering several good chances to add another goal, Real took the lead when Zidane drilled in at the near post after snapping up the rebound form a Figo shot on 70 minutes.

Seven minutes later Figo himself got on the scoresheet to make it 3-1 when he headed in after Monaco keeper Flavio Roma had saved his penalty.

The award came when Ronaldo had been brought down in the area by Squillaci.

Ronaldo added a fourth when he raced on to a Zidane through ball and shot low past Roma.

But Monaco gave themselves hope of a second leg fightback when Real old boy Fernando Morientes scored with a terrific header just over a minute later.

Beckham blow

Real's David Beckham and Monaco's Lucas Bernardi will both miss the return in France after picking up bookings.

Monaco, who lost the Ligue 1 leadership to title rivals Olympique Lyon at the weekend, made a nervous start as they conceded possession to Real and sat back in their own half in the opening minutes.

Real skipper Raul, making a record 86th appearance in the Champions League, had the first chance in the ninth minute but sent a powerful header over the bar from five meters.

They were were made to pay for the failure to convert their chances when Monaco took the lead two minutes before halftime.

Playmaker Ludovic Giuly managed to scramble a pass to Squillaci who struck at the second attempt after the ball had rebounded off defender Alvaro Mejia.

But Real were a different side in the second half and will be expected to face Arsenal or Chelsea in the semifinals.


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