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Bayern's Robben has Inter on defensive
May 21st, 2010 12:52AM

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TAGS:  germany, italy, netherlands, uefa champions league


[UEFA CHAMPIONS LEAGUE] Inter Milan shut down Lionel Messi en route to its series victory over Barcelona. Now it must stop Arjen Robben, the hottest player after Messi in this spring's UEFA Champions League. How Inter does against the Dutch could go a long way toward determining who wins the first Saturday final in European Cup history.

Robben lauded fellow Dutchman Louis van Gaal for his attacking philosophy that netted the German team two goals at Manchester United in the quarterfinals and three goals away to Lyon in the semifinals.

"Van Gaal is a coach who wants to play soccer," says Robben, who battled back from injuries to lead Bayern to the final. "He wants to play nice soccer."

But Robben also knows Inter coach Jose Mourinho from their days together at Chelsea -- where Robben never really fit in -- and he expects Mourinho to use the same defensive tactics that limited high-scoring Barca to single goals in each of the two semifinal legs.

"Mourinho is a purer winning coach," he said. "He has his tactics always ready. He doesn't think too much about playing nice soccer."

Robben's task will be made more difficult because of the suspension to French star Franck Ribery, but that didn't seem to stop Bayern in Lyons, where Ivica Olic scored a hat trick.

Thomas Mueller, picked for Germany's World Cup squad at the age of 20, will be the third member of the Bayern Munich attack.

Inter Milan certainly has the defense to execute the tactics Mourinho employs. Its back five of three Brazilians and two Argentines is one of the best in Europe.

For left back Javier Zanetti and Esteban Cambiasso, Saturday's final in Madrid will be their World Cup. They weren't picked for Argentina's team in South Africa.

PROBABLE LINEUPS:
Bayern Munich: 22-Hans-Joerg Butt; 21-Philipp Lahm, 5-Daniel van Buyten, 6-Martin Demichelis, 26-Diego Contento; 8-Hamit Altintop, 17-Mark van Bommel, 31-Bastian Schweinsteiger, 10-Arjen Robben; 11-Ivica Olic, 25-Thomas Mueller.
Inter Milan: 12-Julio Cesar; 13-Maicon, 25-Walter Samuel, 6-Lucio, 4-Javier Zanetti; 19-Esteban Cambiasso, 5-Dejan Stankovic; 10-Wesley Sneijder; 9-Samuel Eto’o, 22-Diego Milito, 27-Goran Pandev



0 comments
  1. Kerry Ogden
    commented on: May 21, 2010 at 9:46 a.m.
    Inter shouldn't have any problem against Bayern! Bayern is very lucky to have made it this far and they will only to get their butts beat by a far better team, INTER!

  1. Ric Fonseca
    commented on: May 23, 2010 at 5:02 p.m.
    Huh??? I would've rather seen a very good match with these two teams, however, after seeing Inter go bunker-style, enven and despite Milito's goals, it did not win me over to Mourinho's tactics. And seeing that his defenders are all Latinos, I wonder if he could've coached a full Italnian side - given that they have known to play attractive and balanced calccio? I just hope Mourinho can do something with Real Madrid such as positive futbol, now that he won't be teaching/coaching negative calccio! Robben is absolutely correct in saying that Coach van Gaal likes attratvice and positive soccer.


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