Inter managed to capture all three points at home against a tough Bremen side after a brace by Adriano helped the Nerazzurri to a 2-0 victory. Werder Bremen played wtih 10 men for nearly the whole game as french defender Ismael tackled Adriano from behind as early as the 4th minute, with the Brazilian striker on his way to give Inter an early lead. Vieri missed the spot kick and overall had a poor game. But later on, we had another chance to score as Adriano was tackled by Werder's captain Baumann, who was unlucky as the replays showed that he made the tackle from outside the penalty area. Adriano capitalized at the 34th minute to give Inter the lead. Adriano made it 2-0 with only 2 minutes of the 2nd half to go as his shot from outside the area was too hard for Reinke to stop. And by the way, we played with our 3rd kit, the Champions League one.
Inter's line-up had a few surprises. Mancini made 3 changes from the team that faced Chievo over the weekend as Cordoba, Van Der Meyde and Emre all started in the place of the suspended Mihajlovic, Ze Maria and Edgar Davids. Vieri and Adriano played alongside each other once more in the Nerazzurri attack. Dejan Stankovic partnered Veron at the heart of our midfield with Emre playing as a left winger. The funny thing is, Mancini didn't use a true defensive midfielder for this game ! I really can't understand how come a coach like Roberto Mancini commits such a basic error ! Anyway, back to action...
As early as the 4th minute, the turning point of the whole game takes place. Werder's centre-back Ismael commits a clear tackle from behind to deny Adriano a sure goal. Lubos Michel (who was born on the 16th of May, like our owner Massimo Moratti) doesn't hesitate to award a penalty and show the red card to the French defender. Vieri, who was awful at Chievo, takes the penalty kick as to try and regain his lost confidence if he manages to score. Sadly, Vieri's penalty is saved by Werder's goalie Reinke, after Bobo blasts the ball into the centre of the goal, choosing power instead of precision.
Inter didn't cry over spilt Milk as Van Der Meyde, who had one hell of a game at his first start for Inter this season, manages to get hold of the ball inside the German penalty box and his shot is saved by Reinke's legs. Once again Reinke was a tad lucky as his legs saved the German champions from 2 goals in the space of 3 minutes.
After 20 minutes, Adriano was wrongly flagged offisde by at least a metre as he lobbed the ball over Reinke's head. The Brazilian was creating havoc for Werder Bremen's backline that didn't know how to stop him ! Truly, Adriano deserves the banner made by our tifosi in Milano that said "Adriano...Re di Milano."
In the 32nd minute, Once again Adriano was through on goal after a great pass from Veron, and the German's Captain Frank Baumann makes a tackle from outsdie the box but Lubos Michel was fooled. Baumann should consider himself really lucky though as he should've been sent off and Bremen would have to play for a whole hour with 9 men at the Giuseppe Meazza. Baumann was just booked by the Slovakian match official. This time, Adriano didn't repeat Vieri's mistake from the spot as the "Re di Milano" slotted home to send the Meazza crowd wild.
Vieri was unlucky as his volley from a pin point cross by Van Der Meyde is punched over by Reinke. Van Der Meyde was playing on the left during the closing stages of the first half.
In the dying moments of the 1st half, German midfielder Borowski misses the target as his half volley goes inches wide of Toldo's left hand post. That was really close to being 1-1.
The second half starts and Vieri misses the target once more, as his strong left-footed shot hits a Bremen defender. In the 52nd minute, Il Capitano, who clearly looked tired not only tonight but also in Verona 3 days back, is substituted for Ze Maria. Ze Maria played as a right-back, obviously. Vieri recieved the Captain's armband. This really didn't help Vieri, as he failed to score from 8 yards out with only Reinke to beat. He recieved a great defence splitting pass from Adriano, but Vieri only managed to find the hands of Reinke.
5 minutes later, Van Der Meyde asked to be substituted as made made a big effort and looked tired, but Mancini kept him on the pitch for the whole game. In the 68th minute, Andy coul've doubled our lead as his shot from inside the penalty area was well saved by Reinke, who had a fine performance and denied Inter on several occasions.
Then Werder dominated proceedings as they had 2 chances in quick succession. Borowski was unlucky to see his thunderous drive go wide of the post. Then Toldo managed to pull a good save to deny a dangerous free kick executed by French playmaker Johan Micoud.
At last, Vieri was substituted for Alvaro Recoba. Il Chino came on for Bobo in the 77th minute but didn't have enough time to contribute to the game as all we did was defend and Werder didn't look like they had a player sent-off. Still, Recoba had one good play with both Adriano and then Stankovic, who had a poor game, and the latter unleashed a left footed shot that hit the lucky Reinke.
Both Ivan Cordoba and Marco Materazzi were quite solid, and the Colombian Captain made a decisive intervention to deny Werder from scoring the equalizer. Credit to both of them, as they suffered from the lack of defensive support coming from the midfield. Even Veron had to get back and win balls for us, which was totally ridiculous. I Think Inter is the only team in modern football that uses 2 attacking midfielders alongside each other withouht a true defensive midfielder !
Dejan Stankovic gets injured and Mancini introduces Cambiasso. In the 84th minute, Adriano somehow fails to convert a great chance as Emre's precise cross from the left finds the Brazilian open but his effort goes wide. A minute later, Toldo saved us as he blocked a chance from substitute striker Miroslav Klose. On the other end of the pitch and against the run of play, Adriano practised some magic as he brilliantly controlled Veron's long range, millimetric pass with his chest and fired home to finish-off any hope for a German last minute comeback. I got to admit, the last 7 or 8 minutes before this goal was scored passed like 7 years as Werder pressured us and looked pretty dangerous.
A win is a win, even if our performance wasn't that convincing, mainly due to 2 reasons. Vieri once again was awful and he gums up the whole work of the team. Secondly, not using a defensive midfielder which i regard as a fatal mistake that shouldn't be done by a professional tactician like Mancini.
Man of the match is obviously Adriano, with Van Der Meyde having an excellent game and showing fancy tricks that amazed the crowd. The Dutchamn has huge talent and he showed that tonight. Favalli, Cordoba and Materazzi were all solid and didn't allow much space to the Germans. Ze Maria was fine when he came on and pushed forward everytime he had the chance to. As i mentioned before, Deki had a poor game with both Emre and Veron playing well if you look at the circumstances (Emre starting for the first time this season and Veron having to defend.)
Bookings : Cordoba and Favalli.
Congrats and FORZA INTER !!!!!