It has been a dream come true for Inter fans after they reaches the finals of Europe’s most prestigious competition, UEFA Champions League. Victory often becomes sweeter when it comes against once of the biggest rivals. Inter defeated their local foes AC Milan by 1-0, with Argentine Lautaro Martinez on target, advancing to the finals by 3-0 on aggregate.
Inter defeats Milan to reach the finals
When Champions League group stage was decided, not many of the football fanatics had pitted on Inter to reach the ultimate showdown, with their group consisting European heavyweights like Bayern Munich and FC Barcelona. But, Inzaghi’s men had believed in themselves, and here they are, in the final, awaiting for another heavyweight to counter them in the final, which will be decided today after Manchester City and Real Madrid clash, with both teams tied at 1-1.
New Line-up, same mentality
Simone Inzaghi had made some necessary changes in the squad, which had been rested in their last Serie A match against Sassuolo, in which they had triumphed 4-2. A traditional 3-5-2 formation comprising the experienced Lautaro Martinez and seasoned Edin Dzeko on the front, and a bunch of midfield “galactics” comprising Barella, Calhanoglu among others. In the defense set-up, it was up to Bastoni, Acerbi and Darmian to thwart the attacks from AC Milan.
Milan on the other hand gave the attacking responsibility to Olivier Giroud, and Rafael Leao was included in the starting eleven, to reinforce the attack. Mike Maignan and his defensive army was staged to stop any sense of attack from their rivals.
Dominant from the first
Both the teams were ready to pounce upon their opponents since the starting whistle, as it was a matter of reputation for both sides. Inter was having a UEFA final at the back of their head, and AC Milan was thinking of saving their blushes after a string of poor performances in the league.
In the first leg, it was the seasoned veterans Edin Dzeko and Mkhitaryan who opened the scoring for Nerazzuris. Although this time, Milan had put up a brave fight but it was destined for Lautaro Martinez to score the opener. Milan had their possession of the ball most of the time, having 57% ball hold statistics in comparison to Inter, who had 43% to their share.
The first half, although quite interesting, with both the teams getting some opportunities to go ahead, ended up 0-0. It was again, in the second half, Inter had ramped up their attack with substituting Edin Dzeko with Romelu Lukaku. Finally, on the 74th minute, it was the big Belgian striker Lukaku, who assisted his strike partner Lautaro, and as a result, Inter had confirmed their place in the final, after an agonizing wait of 13 years, reaching it last in 2010.
Interesting clash awaits for them
As Inter has reached the finals, it would be interesting to see who will be meeting them, after an outcome in the “ultra”-heavyweight clash between defending Champions Real Madrid and Manchester City. Both of the teams are tied at 1-1, with Kevin de Bruyne scoring a beauty to salvage a draw at the Santiago Bernabeu.
Inter are going to Istanbul, and would hope for a “miracle” there, just like Liverpool did it in 2006.