Guardian, Wednesday, February 20, 2008 4:15 PM
The Guardian translates the headlines in Italy following Inter Milan's 2-0 Champions League defeat against Liverpool at Anfield. Notwithstanding the harsh sending off of Marco Materazzi after 30
minutes, the assessments of Inter's play were rather damning. "Bitter but fair," said Alberto Cerruti of the Gazzetta dello Sport. "Clinging to the alibi of the numerical
disadvantage will not do, because the great Inter [was] ... categorically outplayed by a Liverpool side that is anything but irresistible." Mario Sconcerti of the Corriere della Sera concurred.
"They didn't play, there wasn't a game, there wasn't a shot, they lacked personality and nerves," he wrote. "A frankly embarrassing effort when compared to the
straightforward superiority Inter enjoys over every Italian opponent ... it is not obligatory to beat [Liverpool], but it is normal to play them at football."
Over at camp Inter,
players and officials pointed fingers in different directions. Club owner Massimo Moratti called his players "heroes", and blamed the result on poor officiating. However, striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic
, who had a conspicuously poor night, placed all the blame on Materazzi, responding to the question "what
happened?" with "Why don't you go and ask Materazzi what happened?" Coach Roberto Mancini
, meanwhile, tried to keep
a cool head: "We'll have to score three goals in the return leg and it won't be easy, but I'm convinced that it's possible," he said.
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