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Fernando Torres silences the San Siro in classic European Liverpool away win

In 2008 the Reds arrived in Milan holding a 2-0 lead over their last-16 opponents, with a place in the Champions League quarter-finals in their sights.

Inter Milan 0-1 Liverpool

Champions League Last 16, San Siro
March 11, 2008

Goals: Torres 68′


After late goals from Dirk Kuyt and Steven Gerrard sealed a first-leg victory a month previous, Rafa Benitez’s Liverpool lined up looking to get the job done against an Inter side littered with big names.

MILAN, ITALY - Tuesday, March 10, 2008: Liverpool's captain Steven Gerrard MBE and FC Internazionale Milano's Patrick Vieira during the UEFA Champions League First knockout Round 2nd Leg match at the San Siro. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Javier Zanetti presided over the midfield battle along with Patrick Vieira, Esteban Cambiasso and Dejan Stankovic, with Maicon and Cristian Chivu on the defensive flanks and a young Zlatan Ibrahimovic up front.

Liverpool, meanwhile, were forced into one change from the Anfield leg, with Jamie Carragher becoming the first player in the club’s history to make 100 European appearances as he filled in for Steve Finnan at right-back.

MILAN, ITALY - Tuesday, March 10, 2008: Liverpool players form a wall to defend a free-kick from FC Internazionale Milano's Zlatan Ibrahimovic during the UEFA Champions League First knockout Round 2nd Leg match at the San Siro. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

For much of the game, it was a showcase for the goalkeepers, as Pepe Reina and Julio Cesar were called into action time and time again to keep the scores level.

But the balance was tipped in the Reds’ favour when centre-back Nicolas Burdisso received a second yellow card after a challenge on Lucas Leiva.

It came after a red for Marco Materazzi in the first leg and gave Inter a mountain to climb if they were going to seal progress, with a profligate Ibrahimovic not helping matters.

MILAN, ITALY - Tuesday, March 10, 2008: FC Internazionale Milano's Nicolas Burdisso is shown the red card by referee Tom Henning Ovrebo and is sent off during the UEFA Champions League First knockout Round 2nd Leg match against Liverpool at the San Siro. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Fernando Torres showed the Swede how it was done when sent through by Fabio Aurelio midway through the second half, turning and firing home to give Cesar no chance and clinch a quarter-final spot for Liverpool.

A win that once again underlined the grit of Benitez’s side, the Reds overcame an Inter led by Roberto Mancini, who a year-and-a-half later would take over at Man City.

MILAN, ITALY - Tuesday, March 10, 2008

Liverpool went to beat Arsenal by a 5-3 aggregate score in the quarter-finals but were unable to book a place in the final for a third time in four seasons as they fell to a 4-3 defeat to Chelsea in the semi-finals.

Inter put their European angst behind them to celebrate the third of five consecutive Serie A titles later that season, while they returned to the pinnacle as they won the Champions League under Jose Mourinho in 2010.

MILAN, ITALY - Tuesday, March 10, 2008: FC Internazionale Milano's supporters during the UEFA Champions League First knockout Round 2nd Leg match against Liverpool at the San Siro. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

It took them 11 years to win another major trophy, but having surged back to the Serie A summit last time out, they represent a real challenge as Liverpool head to the San Siro again.


Inter Milan: Cesar; Maicon, Burdisso, Rivas, Chivu; Cambiasso, Zanetti, Vieira (Pele 76′), Stankovic (Jimenez 84′); Cruz, Ibrahimovic (Suazo 80′)

Subs not used: Toldo, Maniche, Figo, Crespo

Liverpool: Reina; Carragher, Hyypia, Skrtel, Aurelio; Lucas, Mascherano (Pennant 84′), Gerrard; Kuyt (Riise 81′), Babel (Benayoun 66′), Torres

Subs not used: Itandje, Arbeloa, Voronin, Crouch

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