Champions League

Martinez, Lukaku sink Slavia to keep Inter's knockout hopes alive

2019-11-28 07:17
Romelu Lukaku
Romelu Lukaku (Getty Images)

Prague - A brace from Lautaro Martinez and a Romelu Lukaku goal handed Inter Milan a 3-1 win at Slavia Prague on Wednesday, keeping the Italians in contention for the Champions League last 16.

Inter are level with Borussia Dortmund on seven points each in Group F topped by Barcelona who clinched a last-16 spot after beating the Germans 3-1 at the Camp Nou.

"The win is important for us, we had no choice but to win," said Inter coach Antonio Conte.

"We knew what to expect, the forward duo were decisive and I'm very happy for them," he added.

In the last round of games on December 10, Inter face Barcelona at the San Siro while Dortmund host Slavia.

"We gave meaning to this match against Barca by winning," said Conte.

"We are expecting a great match, hard, but we know that we can count on 80,000 people who will come to the stadium to push us. That was what we wanted."

Martinez opened the scoring on nineteen minutes after Lukaku had picked up a pass, fought off two challenges and took the ball into the box before cutting it back to the unmarked Argentinian.

Martinez scored for the fourth consecutive Champions League game for Inter.

Tomas Soucek levelled for Slavia from the penalty spot in the 37th minute after Stefan de Vrij had brought down striker Peter Olayinka in the box.

Polish referee Szymon Marciniak first ignored the foul and let play continue with Lukaku scoring on the counter-attack before seeing his goal chalked off as the video referee took centre stage.

Lukaku added Inter's second nine minutes from the end after Slavia's last man Michal Frydrych slipped and let him round keeper Ondrej Kolar.

Martinez then volleyed home his second as Lukaku robbed the Slavia defence and provided him with a superb cross in the 88th minute.

'Two excellent forwards'

Outside of the four goals, Slavia had the first sight of the target on five minutes when Josef Husbauer narrowly missed with a header.

Inter's first shot came from Martinez whose low shot across the goal narrowly went the wrong side of Kolar's left post.

After Inter's opener, Slavia put the Nerazzurri under pressure, but Frydrych headed wide and Lukas Masopust just missed the top left corner of Samir Handanovic's goal.

Inter were on the front foot early into the second half, but they failed to produce a decent chance at first.

On the other side, Handanovic had a hard time clearing a deflected Masopust shot over the crossbar and Slavia's second-half substitute Ibrahim Traore missed narrowly.

Moments later, Lukaku sent his header onto the crossbar and Marcelo Brozovic then followed suit with a volley halfway into the second half.

Five minutes later Masopust intercepted a pass and sprinted down the centre but failed to beat Handanovic one-on-one.

"The game went the wrong way, we had many losses during the game and Inter, leaning on two excellent forwards, could capitalise on that," said Slavia coach Jindrich Trpisovsky.

"Inter's performance improved in the second half and ours was getting worse. In fact, they could have scored the decider much earlier."

 

Read News24’s Comments Policy

Fixtures
Saturday, 30 May 2020
TBA v TBA, Ataturk Olympic Stadium 02:00
Logs
Team P W PTS
Team P W PTS
Team P W PTS
Team P W PTS
Team P W PTS
Team P W PTS
Team P W PTS
Team P W PTS
Previous Results

Date Home Team Result Away Team
Vote

Who will emerge victorious in this season's Champions League?

 
 
Men
Women
Love 2 Meet
English Premiership flutter

Take Sport24's "expert" tips at your peril...

Sport24 on Twitter

Follow Sport24 news on Twitter

Featured

The 2018/19 Absa Premiership season is in full swing. Will Mamelodi Sundowns retain their title? Or can one of Kaizer Chiefs, Orlando Pirates, Wits, SuperSport United - or another team perhaps - snatch glory from the Brazilians? Be sure to visit Sport24 for all the latest news!

Latest blogs
 

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

 
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.