Cape Town - Cristiano Ronaldo ended a rare three game goalscoring drought with the first goal in Real Madrid's record equalling 10th straight Champions League win on Wednesday beating Schalke 04 2-0 in Germany.
The holders, whose other goal came through Brazilian Marcelo in the second-half, will fancy their chances of easing through to the quarter-finals when they meet in the second leg next month.
Real's victory, which fortunately for the hosts did not come near the 6-1 hammering they took in last season's last 16 first leg encounter in Germany, equalled Bayern Munich's record which was set back in December 2013.
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"It's clear that Cristiano Ronaldo lives to score goals," said Real Madrid coach Carlo Ancelotti.
"It's not a problem for us if he doesn't score for a game or two but it's obvious that the goal did him good.
"It wasn't only a goal for the statistics. It was an important goal - the lead goal. At a key stage of the season it was important to win and I think we're on the right track."
- News 24