After a gruelling encounter, Inter were ousted from the Champions league courtesy of playing a draw with PSV Eindhoven. Inter would have thought that they have done enough for their next round progression after Inter captain Mauro Icardi equalised for the Italian side in the 73rd minute. But, a late goal in the other game where Tottenham played Barca at Camp Nou crushed the Italian side’s hope.
All Inter needed was a draw or win against PSV while hoping for Tottenham to lose their clash against Barca, which would have ensured their route to next round on superior point difference. The draw against PSV and Barca’s stalemate against Spurs, however, crushed this hope as Tottenham progressed to the next round on the basis of away goals.
The San Siro outfit had a good start into the game against Mark van Bommel’s side. In just the sixth, minute through Icardi’s delivery, a brilliant heading opportunity was created for Ivan Perisic but the Croatian’s attempt hit the post. Ousmane Dembele’s goal for Barca put Inter in the driving seat in Milan. Hirving Lozano, however, negated Inter’s advantage as he headed Steven Bergwijn’s cross when the Dutch winger capitalised on Kwadwo Asamoah’s poor piece of play.
Another opportunity soon arose for the PSV, when Luuk de Jong got the better of the Inter defence, before his left-footed was saved by Inter goalkeeper Samir Handanovic. In the 30th minute, Perisic got the better of Denzel Dumfries before pulling it back for Icardi whose valiant effort went wide of the far post. The score at the end of first half read 1–0 to PSV.
Inter started the second half just as they did the first. Borja Valero ran in the centre of the pitch before spotting Icardi who fired a fierce left-footed effort towards goal which was brilliantly saved by Jeroen Zoet.
Zoet was soon shown a yellow for time wasting in the 52nd minute of the match. Inter were desperate for a goal as was evident when they made an attacking substitution by bringing Keita Balde onto the pitch in place of Antonio Candreva.
The visitors too made their first change of the night when Erick Guttierrez was replaced by teenager Michal Sadilek. In the 69th minute, Asamoah who had an unforgettable night, was replaced by Lautaro Martinez.
In the 73rd minute, Mauro Icardi levelled the game through a wonderful header, connecting on to a brilliant cross from Matteo Politano. After Inter’s goal, they were firm-favourites to advance to the next-round as things stood in Spain where Barca were leading against Spurs.
In the 81st minute of the match, de Jong almost managed to steal the ball from the Inter goalkeeper. Handanovic had a poor first touch upon receiving a pass from Milan Skriniar, but the Slovenian goalie brushed off the ball towards Danilo D’Ambrosio.
A final change was made by Spalletti in the 83rd minute, when Sime Vrsaljko replaced Politano as Inter tried to go defensive to preserve the advantage it had against Spurs.
Lucas Moura’s 86th minute strike for Spurs turned the tables for the Nerazzurri as they now had to win the game.
Inter would have scored in the dying minutes of the game, when Perisic crossed into the middle where an unmarked Martinez stood freely. The Argentine, however, failed to keep his header down as the ball swung over the top of the post. Lozano was replaced by the away side in place of Gaston Pereiro for wasting a couple of seconds while Skriniar was shown yellow for his hard foul on de Jong. The match concluded at one goal apiece, thus enabling the Spurs to progress to the next round while Inter were relegated to the Europa league.