Inter advance to Champions League final

Sports Desk, May 16 (EFE).- Internazionale are headed to the Champions League final for the first time in 13 years after a 1-0 win Tuesday over AC Milan in the second leg of the semifinal for a 3-0 victory on aggregate.

The Nerazzurri beat Bayern Munich in 2010 to hoist the trophy for the third time in their history.

This year’s final in Istanbul will pit Inter against either Manchester City, who have never won the Champions League, or Real Madrid, in pursuit of a record-extending 15th title in Europe’s elite club tournament.

For Inter the taste of reaching the Champions League final was even sweeter because it came at the expense of their archrivals in front of 75,000 people at the stadium the two clubs have shared for more than seven decades.

The Rossoneri, after edging Inter last September in the first of their two Serie A matches, have gone on to lose four in a row to the Nerazzurri – across three different competitions – for the first time since the 1973-1974 campaign.

Down 2-0 after the first leg, when they were technically the home team at the San Siro, seven-time Champions League winners Milan started aggressively on Tuesday, buoyed by the return from injury of top striker Rafael Leao.

Brahim Diaz had an excellent chance to narrow the gap in the 11th minute, but his shot posed no problems for Inter goalkeeper Andre Onana.

Leao fired wide when he found himself one-on-one with Onana in the 37th minute, two minutes before Mike Maignan made a great stop at the other end to prevent Edin Dzeko from adding to Inter’s advantage.

Milan struggled to create opportunities in the second half and when one materialized in the 70th minute for Leao, the Portugal international produced only a weak effort that didn’t trouble Onana.

With just over 15 minutes left in regulation, Nerazzurri captain Lautaro Martinez sealed the win with his 25th goal of the season for Inter in all competitions.

The Argentine striker will have the chance to lift the Champions League trophy less than six months after winning World Cup 2022 in Qatar.

EFE tfc/dr

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