Late Inter show breaks Siena hearts
ROME:Champions Inter Milan scored two late goals to stun rock-bottom Siena 4-3 at the San Siro on Saturday to open up an 11-point lead at the top of Serie A.
Earlier in the day, 10-man AS Roma moved up to fourth and the final Champions League qualification position with a 1-0 home success against woeful Chievo.
Inter looked to be heading for their first home defeat under Jose Mourinho as they trailed 3-2 with two minutes remaining. But Dutch playmaker Wesley Sneijder curled home his second free-kick of the game and then three minutes into injury-time substitute Walter Samuel crashed home the winner to send the Inter faithful wild.
Mourinho admitted that it was rough luck on the basement-sitters who fully deserved something from a thrilling match. The Portuguese, who has not lost a home match since 2002 with three different clubs, admitted also that his team had been lucky, particularly with their equaliser.
Even without Algeria forward Abdul Kader Ghezzal, Siena gave a good account of themselves from the off. The visitors stunned their hosts on 18 minutes as former Middlesbrough forward Massimo Maccarone ran unchallenged from the halfway line before smacking a 30-yard screamer past Julio Cesar’s despairing dive into the top corner.
Inter’s response was rapid, though, as Diego Milito equalised after running onto Sneijder’s
long ball, cutting inside Sanchez Cribari with embarrassing ease and curling the ball around Curci. Full normality seemed to have been restored on 36 minutes when Sneijder scored his first free-kick from 20 yards but 60 seconds later Siena equalised.
Reginaldo turned Inter captain Javier Zanetti easily out on the right flank and his cross was missed by all until Swede Albin Ekdal arrived at the back post to slip the ball under Julio Cesar. A shock was then truly on the cards
20 minutes into the second half
as Maccarone bagged his
second as he beat Julio Cesar at the near post after arriving unmarked on the edge of the box to meet Reginaldo’s pull back.
But two minutes from the end Sneijder hit a 25-yard special and then substitute Walter Samuel, playing at left-back but thrown forward for the final moments, turned on the edge of the box to shoot left footed in off the far post.
Roma survived the 11th-minute sending off of goalkeeper
Doni as Daniele De Rossi scored the only goal of the game in the opening minute, with former
Italy striker Luca Toni making his debut following his loan move from Bayern Munich.
Toni had a great chance to open his account on five minutes but flicked Rodrigo Taddei’s inch-perfect cross wide of the near post. Roma seemed to have shot themselves in the foot on 11 minutes when goalkeeper Doni came charging out of his box and blocked Elvis Abbruscato’s chip with his arm, earning a straight red card. Even so, the visitors created little and things could have been worse but for Stefano Sorrentino saving David Pizarro’s spot-kick after Toni went down in the box.