Winning start for Benitez

Image: Eto'o: Decisive double

Rafa Benitez enjoyed a winning start as Inter Milan coach after a 3-1 victory over Roma in the Super Cup.

Eto'o scores twice to see off Roma in Super Cup

Rafa Benitez enjoyed a winning start to his reign as Inter Milan coach after a 3-1 victory over Roma in the Italian Super Cup. Former Liverpool boss Benitez replaced Jose Mourinho as coach of last season's Treble winners over the summer and enjoyed the perfect start to his tenure. After falling behind to John Arne Riise's goal, Goran Pandev equalised for Inter before Samuel Eto'o secured the success by scoring twice in the last 20 minutes. Benitez relied upon the players he inherited from Mourinho in his starting XI, while Roma coach Claudio Ranieri also fielded the same team which pushed the Nerazzurri close for the Scudetto last season. Wesley Sneijder had two decent efforts within the first 10 minutes with his second attempt going just a few feet over the crossbar from 20 yards. Francesco Totti sent his strike partner Mirko Vucinic through with a perfectly-weighted pass in the 10th minute, but the Montenegro forward shot straight at Julio Cesar with just the Inter goalkeeper to beat.

Greater threat

Roma were posing the greater threat and Jeremy Menez made room for a shot by cutting inside Walter Samuel, but he tried to find the far corner with the outside of his boot and failed to get any curl on the ball. At the other end, Marco Cassetti threw himself at the feet of Eto'o to block the Cameroon striker's shot from Maicon's cross. Riise, who was sold to Roma by Benitez in 2008, then put his team ahead thanks to yet another intelligent pass from Giallorossi captain Totti. His precision pass allowed the former Liverpool full-back to fire first time past Julio Cesar from just outside the penalty area, the Brazilian goalkeeper getting his fingertips to the ball but failing to keep it out. Roma were good value for their lead but they threw it away when Vucinic passed the ball back towards his goalkeeper from out wide in the 41st minute. Pandev got to the ball ahead of Bogdan Lobont to divert it into the far corner. Menez and Riise tried their luck from distance as Roma started the second half brightly, but Eto'o then took centre stage. He was wrongly ruled offside in the 64th minute as he provided an assist for Diego Milito to score and the pair linked up again six minutes later. This time Milito crossed for Eto'o, who stole in at the near post to beat Cassetti and Lobont to the ball to score. Eto'o then sealed the win for Inter in the 80th minute. He stole possession off Rodrigo Taddei, who was trying to walk the ball out of defence, and played a one-two with Sneijder before sliding a shot under Lobont, who was unable to take enough of the pace off the ball with his leg.

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