The magic of Milito and Mourinho as Inter become European Champions

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INTER 2
Milito 35, 70

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Diego Milito was the star of the show as Inter completed a historic treble with two goals that sunk German champions Bayern Munich. The performance was typical of Jose Mourinho’s team, and in the event that anyone has not seen the Nerazzurri play this season, there was little in the way of glamour but an abundance in efficacy.

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The thrills did come in the form of Milito’s two superbly taken goals. It is a shame that he is perhaps, the least talked about forward in world football. Yet he is the man who has scored all of Inter’s crucial trophy winning goals this season. Both his goals were taken quite brilliantly and the Bavarians could do little to stop him, as he ran from deep areas to score on both occasions.

Munich coach Louis Van Gaal, the man who Mourinho was once an assistant for, appeared to fall into the trap of imposing his own football philosophy on the game instead of trying to halt the Inter machine. Call it pig headedness perhaps, but the student has now certainly become the master. Van Gaal’s team pressured and pressed Inter all over the pitch, winning possession easily at times. In fact the share of the ball was well over 60% throughout the much in Bayern’s favour. But possession is only nine tenths of the law as the saying goes, and unless you score goals then there are no points to be had from playing keep-ball. Mourinho’s men were happy to let their opponents have their fun, but once they got near their penalty area then the shutters came firmly down in the form of Esteban Cambiasso, Lucio and Walter Samuel.

Why Van Gaal did not ask Phillip Lahm to double up on Christian Chivu each time Arjen Robben attacked down the right hand side is a mystery. Robben had the measure of the Romanian, even more so when he got booked. Lahm has excellent attacking ability, but this tactic was not exploited. A two on one situation would have given the Germans an excellent opportunity to punish the Italians, but it never happened. Apart from one well-saved effort, the dutch winger was largely ineffective on Europe’s biggest football stage.

Inter’s ‘Total Footballers’, with Samuel Eto’o playing at times as a deep lying right back, Javier Zanetti happily switching from midfield to defence with ease and players like Goran Pandev and Douglas Maicon who can operate just as effectively whether being asked to defend or attack, the Portuguese Tactician has created the perfect football team. There is much talk of him going to Real Madrid and that really would be interesting to see how he handles the plethora of Galacticos. Can anyone imagine Christiano Ronaldo being asked to double up as a fullback? Now that really would be a challenge.

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