Inter breeze past Seongnam into Club World Cup final

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

ABU DHABI - Inter Milan beat Seongnam Ilhwa Chunma 3-0 Wednesday to advance to the final of the Club World Cup with goals from Dejan Stankovic, veteran captain Javier Zanetti and Diego Milito.

The Champions League winners will face the African champions TP Mazembe in Saturday’s final. The team from the Democratic Republic of Congo stunned Brazilian club Internacional 2-0 in Tuesday’s semi-final.

Inter had a bad start into the South Korean team as they had to replace Dutch play maker Wesley Sneijder with the recently recovered Thiago Motta.

Stankovic’s goal on three minutes, however, made things easy for the Italian Nerazzurri, who then took control in midfield and ran no major risks in a first half they closed two goals up.

The Serb international stormed centrally through a static defence and lay his low shot to the left of Jung Sung Ryon to finish off an action that Cameroon’s Samuel Eto’o triggered with a deep feed for Milito.

Argentine international Milito displayed good form after an injury lay-off and also set up a 32nd-minute goal from his compatriot Zanetti, feeding him back with a heel touch for a low shot into the lower left corner.

The Asian champions fired two wide shots with Colombian Mauricio Molina and Dong Geon Cho before Montenegrin Dzenan Radoncic on 37 minutes forced a first save from Julio Cesar.

The Brazil goalkeeper was also returning from injury and was well positioned before half-time when Kuk Byung Cho aimed a wide header and Colombian Mauricio Molina fired a wide free kick.

Coach Rafael Benitez kept Macedonian Goran Pandev and Eto’o as support strikers to Milito, who fired feebly on 48 minutes, but killed off the contest with an easy flick on 73.

Song Kuk Choi and Molina misfired their attempts after the break as Seongnam sought a comeback and Stankovic threatened on 61 minutes with a shot off a Pandev assist, but was blocked by defender Jae Sung Ko.

Milito, who scored a brace to secure Inter’s 2-0 win over Bayern Munich in the May’s Champions League final, was on target after Eto’o forced a difficult save firing from the left flank.

A good chance for Seongnam went begging on 76 as Australian captain Sasa Ognenovski saw his fast free kick saved and Radoncic fire wide on the rebound.

Filed under: Soccer

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