Lukaku double strike keeps Inter hopes alive – Champions League Soccer Group B Report

Lukaku double strike

UEFA Champions' League Group B report – Borussia M'gladbach vs Inter Milan – Tuesday, 1 December 2020 – Matchday 5 of 6 report

Borussia M'gladbach 2 Inter Milan 3 – Borussia Park

A twin strike by Romelu Lukaku kept Inter Milan's hopes of an unlikely Round of 16 qualification alive as Antonio Conte's men scrapped past a dogged Monchegladbach 2-3 at the Borussia Park on Tuesday night.

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The first half was tough going though for Gladbach. With Alassane Plea lined up alongside Marcus Thuram up front, the Bundesliga side struggled for attacking momentum. Inter Milan, in fact, started strongly with Matteo Darmian slotting one between the legs of Gladbach goalkeeper Yann Sommer for the opener in the 17th minute.

The hosts found their footing in the later stages of the half and were rewarded just before the break as Plea headed home the equalizer a minute into stoppage time.

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Matthias Ginter and Stefan Laoner did a good job at the back keeping Lukaku and Lautaro Martínez in check and allowing the former just one shot before the interval that went wide of the far post.

The momentum swung Inter's way after the break as Lautaro Martinez struck the post from the edge of the penalty area with Lukaku firing in the Italian side's second only two minutes later in the 64th as he slid one low past Gladbach custodian Yann Sommer to the far bottom corner.

The Belgian got his second of the night with an easy tap in from a Achraf Hakimi assist making it 1-3 in the 73rd and it looked like the match had gone beyond the reach of the hosts. But the Bundesliga outfit were not done yet and Plea reduced the deficit in the 76th when he struck after being set up by Thuram.

There was late drama as Ashley Young missed an excellent chance to put the game to rest, before a VAR review on the 83rd minute denied Plea his hat-trick. A leaping substitute Breel Embolo was deemed to be obstructing goalkeeper Samir Handanovic's view before Plea's shot entered the net much to the fury of Gladbach coach Marco Rose who was shown the yellow card on the sidelines.

Gladbach, despite the defeat, are at the top of the Group B cluster with 8 points, one ahead of Shakhtar Donetsk and Real Madrid after the Ukrainians earlier beat Zidane's men 2-0. Inter are at the bottom on 5 points. All four teams will battle to reach the last 16 on the final matchday.

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Borussia M'gladbach line-up: Sommer (goal); Lainer, Ginter, Jantschke (Zakaria 45m), Wendt (Wolf 78m), Kramer, Neuhaus, Lazaro, Stindl (Embolo 70m), Thuram, Plea.

Inter Milan line-up: Handanovic (goal); Skriniar, de Vrij, Bastoni, Darmian (Hakimi 60m), Barella, Brozovic, Gagliardini, Young (Perisic 87m), Lukaku, Martínez (Sanchez 71m)

Man of the match: Romelu Lukaku

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