Benfica 0-2 Inter Milan: Romelu Lukaku and Nicolo Barella put visitors in strong position
Romelu Lukaku secured a 2-0 away win for Inter Milan against Benfica in the first leg of their Champions League quarter-final tie. Inter’s Nicolo Barella opened the scoring with a header before Lukaku, who came off the bench to make an impact, scored from the penalty spot after former Inter player Joao Mario handled. The penalty was awarded by Premier League referee Michael Oliver after reviewing the incident on the pitchside monitor. Benfica struggled to create chances in front of their home crowd, with Inter producing a defensive masterclass. The Italian side had not won any of their past six games leading up to the match. Inter will next host Benfica on April 19 in the second leg of the quarter-final.
This was Benfica’s 13th European game of the season, after starting their Champions League campaign in the third qualifying round in August. Benfica goalkeeper Odisseas Vlachodimos prevented further damage by saving from former Manchester United and Arsenal player Henrikh Mkhitaryan, but Inter held on for the win. Inter manager Simone Inzaghi said that they cannot assume that they are already in the semi-finals as they still need another great game like the one they just had. Benfica will now need to turn the tie around in the second leg if they want to progress to the next round of the competition.
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