01.11.09 / 16:55
LIVORNO - Inter warmed up for Kiev with a 2-0 victory over Livorno in Serie A Week 11 at the Stadio Armando Picchi.
Diego Milito and Maicon sent the Amaranto to their first defeat under Serse Cosmi with goals in the second half to put us seven points clear at the top. Sampdoria join Juventus in second place after their 0-0 home draw against Bari.
Mourinho rested Cambiasso, Eto'o and Samuel ahead of Wednesday's Champions League match, handing Rene Krhin his first Serie A start after appearances as a substitute against Parma and Catania.
The 19-year-old Slovenian slotted in alongside Vieira and Muntari as Mourinho reverted to a 4-3-2-1 'Christmas tree' formation with Mancini and Stankovic in support of solitary striker Milito.
Cordoba continued at the back and was partnered by Lucio, who sat out Thursday's win over Palermo, with Zanetti switching to left-back in place of the suspended Chivu.
Francesco Toldo returned to Milan after becoming the second victim of the flu in the Inter camp after Mario Balotelli. He was replaced on the bench by Orlandoni.
Cambiasso made his entrance sooner than expected after Inter lost Muntari to injury, while Eto'o came on for Krhin at the start of the second half.
Spurred on by a vocal crowd, Livorno had the better chances of a low-key first half, Candreva coming closest in added time with a thunderbolt free kick that brought a superb save out of Julio Cesar.
Milito put the game on the right track with his 7th goal for Inter four minutes after the interval. Stankovic picked out the Argentine with a square pass and Il Principe elegantly turned Miglionico, picked his spot and sent a crisp low shot beyond Benussi's grasp.
Adopting a cat and mouse approach, the Nerazzurri proceeded to stifle Livorno's attacking play. Mourinho added an extra reinforcement in defence midway through the half, bringing on Samuel for Stankovic and pushing Zanetti into midfield.
Maicon doubled the lead ten miniutes from time, taking Vieira's short pass to the edge of the area and poking low into the bottom corner for his third of the campaign.
There was still work to do in the closing stages as Julio Cesar made a tipped save from Candreva's free kick, before Danilevicius sent his low effort narrowly wide.
Livorno 0-2 Inter (HT: 0-0)
Scorers: Milito 49, Maicon 80.
Livorno: 11 Benussi; 59 Diniz, 13 Knezevic, 17 Miglionico; 77 Raimondi, 83 Candreva, 46 Pieri; 21 Moro, 7 Pulzetti (18 Dionisi 73), 87 Vitale (9 Danilevicius 54); 10 Tavano.
Subs not used: 1 De Lucia, 5 Marchini, 6 Galante, 8 Bergvold, 15 Cellerino.
Coach: Serse Cosmi.
Inter: 12 Julio Cesar; 13 Maicon, 2 Cordoba, 6 Lucio, 4 Zanetti; 15 Krhin (9 Eto'o 46), 14 Vieira, 11 Muntari (19 Cambiasso 29); 5 Stankovic (69), 30 Mancini; 22 Milito.
Subs not used: 21 Orlandoni, 7 Quaresma, 23 Materazzi, 89 Arnautovic.
Coach: José Mourinho.
Referee: Emidio Morganti (Ascoli Piceno).
Booked: Lucio 37, Raimondi 76, Tavano 83.