Inzaghi To The Rescue
Posted November 29, 2008on:
PARIS: AC Milan’s veteran Italian striker Filippo Inzaghi grabbed his 65th career European goal to dent Portsmouth’s UEFA Cup ambitions on Thursday as Manchester City and Tottenham eased to victory.
Portsmouth, in their first season of European football, were cruising at 2-0 in their Group E clash after goals from Younes Kaboul and Kanu.
But substitute Ronaldinho pulled one back with a fabulous free-kick before poacher Inzaghi struck to put Milan, who have seven points, into the knockout stages and stun the Fratton Park crowd.
Manchester City made it two wins out of two in Group A with an assured 2-0 victory over Germany’s Schalke 04 in Gelksenkirchen which followed their opening 3-2 victory against FC Twente.
Paris Saint Germain’s 2-2 draw with Racing Santander in the same pool meant Mark Hughes’s City are assured of a place in the next round.
City took the lead on the half-hour mark when Daniel Sturridge’s cross-cum-shot was sidefooted home at the far post by Zimbabwean striker Benjani Mwaruwari to stun the majority of the 60,000-strong crowd.
In-form midfielder Stephen Ireland coolly tucked away the second in the 65th minute.
The result follows City’s convincing 3-0 victory at home to Arsenal at the weekend, and Hughes feels his side are in fine fettle ahead of Sunday’s derby meeting with Manchester United.
“It’s been a great week,” he said. “It started off very well, beating Arsenal, and we’ve carried on with a great performance here and that leads us very nicely into a certain game at the weekend.”
Tottenham enjoyed a 1-0 win at Dutch side NEC Nijmegen with Jamie O’Hara’s 14th-minute header proving the clincher after Fraizer Campbell had hit the bar.
Harry Redknapp’s side now have six points from three Group D games, which should be enough to get them through.
“It was difficult. The pitch wasn’t particularly good,” said Redknapp.
“It was difficult to really pass the ball but we were strong and solid and I never felt in any danger. Six points is job done.”
In Group H, CSKA Moscow beat Lech Poznan of Poland 2-1 to make sure of their place in the knockout stages. In Group G, French side St Etienne also reached the last 32 after a 1-1 draw with Belgian league leaders Bruges. — AFP
New Straits Times