Inter blow CSKA away
Internazionale battled back from two-goals down to seal a 4-2 victory over CSKA Moscow.
By Graeme Bailey
Last Updated: 07/11/07 10:02pm
Internazionale battled back from two-goals down to seal a 4-2 victory over CSKA Moscow and all but book their place in the last 16 of the UEFA Champions League.
CSKA raced into a two-goal lead though Brazilian duo Jo and Vagner Love to silence the Giuseppe Meazza - but their joy, and hopes of staying in the Champions League, was short-lived as within two minutes Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Esteban Cambiasso had both struck.
Cambiasso and Ibrahimovic then sealed braces in the second period as Inter maintained their place at the top of Group G, whilst CSKA exit was confirmed as Fenerbahce secured victory over PSV.
The game was quickly into its stride with both sides going close early on. Ibrahimovic struck just wide from a corner in the second minute, and Love twice fired wide from the edge of the box.
Maicon, looking dangerous whenever he picked up the ball on the right flank, then fizzed a shot just past the post - but it was CSKA who grabbed the lead not long after.
Love was again involved as he exchanged passes with Jo - who took the ball on and smashed an unstoppable effort from the edge of the box into the corner.
On the half hour, CSKA doubled their lead as Love broke clear and deceived Julio Cesar in the home goal before firing into the net.
Inter replied almost immediately as slack CSKA marking allowed an unmarked Ibrahimovic to volley home from just four-yards as he met Cristian Chivu's free-kick.
Before CSKA had chance to catch their breath - Inter were level and all the Russian's hard work had been undone as Cambiasso broke into the box and fired home past Igor Akinfeev.
CSKA were shell-shocked and both Olivier Dacourt and Cambiasso created good chances before the break but Hernan Crespo could not convert.
Jo went off at half time, a huge loss for CSKA - but Love kept up his good work and maintained a constant threat, firing wide from the edge of the box just moments into the second period.
But Inter were looking dangerous every time they attacked and they almost grabbed the lead from Akinfeev's poor clearance. Ibrahimovic picked up the ball and broke to the edge of the box, before firing across goal but Crespo just could not get a touch to convert what would almost certainly have been a goal.
Cambiasso was then guilty of a horrific miss as Javier Zanetti dinked a ball to the back post for his compatriot to head into an empty net - but the midfielder contrived to head across the goalmouth.
Minutes later, though, the diminutive midfielder made amends as he put Inter ahead. It was another set-piece as Julio Cruz flicked a corner into the six-yard box and Cambiasso was there to hammer the ball home.
The win was sealed 16 minutes from time when man of the match Ibrahimovic lashed the ball into the top-corner from 25-yards.
Top-spot in Group G will now be decided in two weeks, when Inter host Fenerbahce - who defeated them in Istanbul in the opening game.
|Internazionale||Team Statistics||CSKA Moscow|
|2||1st Half Goals||2|
|4||Shots on Target||4|
|10||Shots off Target||6|