20 Palacio, 41 (2nd half) Palacio
referee Michael Koukoulakis / linesmen D.Saraidaris, D.Efthimiadis / 4th man C.Mpaltas / assistants S.Tritsonis , A.Kakos
UEFA Europa League — last 32, 1st leg — Giuseppe Meazza, Milano — 14 February 2013 21:05
|48' /||The first half comes to a close here at the Meazza with Palacio's goal separating the two sides: 1-0 to Inter at the break|
|48' /||Cluj have a free kick in a dangerous position. Rada bends it past the wall but Handanovic dives at full stretch to tip it around the post. Great goalkeeping from the big Slovene|
|48' /||Kovacic shows a burst of pace to get away from his man before pulling the trigger from the edge of the box: wide, but not by much|
|45' /||The ref awards three minutes of stoppage time|
|43' /||Palacio slides the ball in behind the defence for Cassano, who knocks it past Felgueiras but not quite hard enough and the keeper is able to scoop it back into his possession|
|41' /||Nagatomo pings one into the centre for Guarin, whose audacious bicycle kick goes wide, but he's blown up for a foul anyway|
|39' /||Substitution for Cluj: Godemeche makes way for Maftei|
|38' /||More lovely football from Inter: Guarin finds Cassano with a delightful ball, but the Italian striker is closed down in the box and can't get his shot away|
|36' /||Brilliant from Cassano! He sees Palacio's movement in the box and picks him out with a rabona, but Felgueiras is quick off his line to block Palacio's shot|
|35' /||Muresan's long-range drive goes well wide|
|32' /||Pereira receives a caution for sliding in on Godemeche|
|30' /||Pereira's delivery from the left is too high|
|25' /||Kovacic plays the ball upfield for Cassano, the striker is flagged for offside|
|21' /||Cluj try to hit back immediately as Muresan lets fly from the left of the box: wide|
|20' /||GOAL FOR INTER!!! Guarin wins a challenge inside his own half and surges forward before releasing Palacio: his finish is clinical. 1-0!|
|19' /||Kovacic tries his luck from range but that's a fairly comfortable save for Felgueiras|
|17' /||Good chance for Inter: Cassano dinks a ball over the defence for Cambiasso to run onto, Cuchu tries to centre first time for Palacio but his touch is a tad too heavy and it sails beyond Palacio's reach|
|14' /||Cassano looks to play in Palacio but Felgueiras is out and onto it|
|10' /||Stramaccioni makes an enforced change, sending Palacio on in place of Milito|
|7' /||Milito is in trouble after clashing with an opponent. Bad news for Inter: he has to leave the pitch on a stretcher|
|5' /||Cambiasso rolls the ball to Nagatomo with the sole of his foot and the Japanese defender sends a cross towards the far post. It's overhit though and goes behind for a goal kick|
|4' /||Maah latches onto Silvestre's clearance and unleashes a shot from outside the box: wide|
|2' /||Rui Pedro gets an early effort in... or tries to at least. It goes out of play well wide of goal|
|1' /||Cluj take the kick-off and we're up and running at the Meazza|
|1' /||Cambiasso, Kovacic, Gargano and Guarin start in midfield, Cassano and Milito up top|
|1' /||Handanovic is between the sticks, with a back four of Nagatomo, Silvestre, Ranocchia and Pereira|
|1' /||Welcome to the Stadio Meazza for tonight's Europa League clash between Inter and Cluj|
|47' /||That's it! Koukoulakis blows the final whistle and Inter have beaten Cluj 2-0. Return leg in Romania next Thursday|
|46' /||Alvarez zips away and releases Guarin, the Colombian's right-footer is off target|
|45' /||The ref has given two minutes of added time|
|44' /||Bjelanovic is booked for a foul on Nagatomo|
|43' /||Stramaccioni makes his final substitution, with Jonathan taking over from Kovacic|
|41' /||Palacio beats two players and goes for goal: over|
|41' /||GOAL FOR INTER! Kovacic dinks the ball over the defence for Palacio to run onto and lob Felgueiras from a tight angle. 2-0 to Inter|
|39' /||Substitution for Cluj: Bjelanovic comes on for Rui Pedro|
|37' /||Muresan is booked for trying to take Kovacic's legs away|
|33' /||Cluj make a change: Hora replaces Maah|
|28' /||Change for Inter: Cassano comes off, Alvarez goes on|
|25' /||Silvestre is shown a yellow card for bringing down Maah|
|25' /||Inter hit on the break. Cassano receives the ball close to the left touchline, sees Palacio's run through the middle and chips it forward, Felgueiras rushes out of his area to boot it clear|
|22' /||Maah goes into the book for protesting|
|20' /||Inter cranking up the pressure as they go in search of a second: Cassano, Cambiasso and Palacio link up well before El Trenza's shot is deflected behind for a corner|
|19' /||Guarin's flick-on sets Palacio free to charge down the wing unchallenged, he fizzes a low cross into the box for Cassano: under pressure from his marker, the striker is unable to connect with it and a good chance goes begging|
|15' /||Muresan's effort from outside the box sails high over the bar|
|11' /||Bit of a free-for-all inside the box after Cassano's free kick, Cambiasso gets a shot away but it's deflected clear|
|8' /||Guarin blasts a free kick into the wall|
|7' /||Palacio collects the ball on the byline and rolls it back for Cassano, who takes one touch before bending it the wrong side of the far post|
|1' /||We're back under way at the Meazza as Inter begin the second half|
|14 February 2013||2-0||20' Palacio, 89' Palacio||Vai alla partita|
|4||shots on target||1|
|4||shots off target||6|
MILAN - Rodrigo Palacio hit a brace at the Meazza to settle the first leg of Inter's 2012/13 UEFA Europa League round-of-32 tie with Cluj.
There were just seven minutes on the clock when Diego Milito went to the ground in pain. He left the pitch on a stretcher and was replaced by Palacio a few minutes later.
A good chance went begging in the 17th minute as Cassano picked out Cambiasso on the far side of the box and Cuchu overhit his cross for Palacio. The Argentine striker did get a bite of the cherry just three minutes later, however, and he gobbled it up. Guarin muscled an opponent off the ball in his own half and galloped upfield before laying off for Palacio, whose finish left Felgueiras with no chance.
On 37 minutes Inter had two opportunities to double their lead: first Cassano showed sublime skill to release Palacio in the box, only for Felgueriras to deny him; then Piccolo stopped another Palacio strike with what appeared to be handball – no penalty was given though.
Inter rounded out the scoreline with four minutes of normal time remaining. Mateo Kovacic, who impressed on his full debut at the Meazza, chested the ball down before sending Palacio away with an exquisite pass; El Trenza bore down on goal and lobbed the ball over the keeper from a wide angle.
The stage is set for the return leg at the Stadionul Dr. Constantin Radulescu next Thursday: Cluj v Inter kicks off at 19:00 local time.
Inter 2-0 Cluj (HT: 1-0)
Scorers: Palacio 20, 86.
Inter: 1 Handanovic; 55 Nagatomo, 6 Silvestre, 23 Ranocchia, 31 Pereira; 19 Cambiasso, 29 Kovacic (29 Jonathan, 88), 21 Gargano; 14 Guarin; 22 Milito (8 Palacio, 10), 99 Cassano (11 Alvarez, 73).
Subs not used: 27 Belec, 4 Zanetti, 24 Benassi, 40 Juan Jesus.
Coach: Andrea Stramaccioni.
Cluj: 1 Felgueiras; 3 Ivo Pinto; 13 Piccolo, 20 Cadu, 45 Camora; 6 Muresan, 23 Godemeche (12 Maftei, 84), 24 Rada, 8 Sepsi; 14 Maah (22 Hora, 78), 30 Rui Pedro (19 Bjelanovic, 84).
Subs not used: 44 Stancioiu, 10 Valente, 26 Celestino, 62 Paun-Alexandru.
Coach: Paulo Sergio.
Referee: Michael Koukoulakis (GRE).
Booked: Pereira 31, Maah 67, Silvestre 70, Muresan 82.
Added time: 3 + 2 minutes.
Inter vs CFR Cluj
|Nagatomo 55||Ivo Pinto|
|Milito 22||Rui Pedro|
|Alvarez 11||Diogo Valente|