05.05.10 / 23:04
ROME - One title down, two to go. Inter beat Roma 1-0 in a tension-filled Tim Cup final to lift the trophy for the sixth time in their history.
Diego Milito scored the solitary goal five minutes before the break as the Nerazzurri claimed their first silverware of the season with the Scudetto and Champions League still up for grabs.
Surprisingly, Roma boss Ranieri left his talismanic captain Totti on the bench, while José Mourinho made three changes to the team that beat Lazio at the weekend, bringing in Cordoba and Materazzi for Lucio and Samuel in defence, and starting Milito up front with Stankovic dropping to the bench.
Any doubts over the fitness of Sneijder were cleared when the Dutch playmaker lined up at the tip of a diamond midfield but his match lasted all of five minutes when ex-Inter defender Nicolas Burdisso set the tone for a nervous match in the fifth minute with a reckless challenge.
Inter had the best of the first-half chances and went close to an opener when Cambiasso swept wide to Eto'o and the Cameroon forward served the onrushing Maicon, who saw his angled shot is blocked by Julio Sergio.
Roma narrowly missed from a counter-attack with Julio Cesar making a brilliant tipped interception to deny Toni a tap-in from Taddei's cross.
Milito then had a goal ruled out for offside when the flag went up after he ran to meet Eto'o's through ball, but there was no disallowing his opener in the 40th minute.
Thiago Motta freed Milito with a deft touch of the ball and the Prince ran into the area before crashing a precise right-footed shot into the top left corner.
Inter survived a scare shortly after the restart when Julio Cesar spilled Totti's free kick, only for Juan to head over with the goal gaping.
At the other end Julio Sergio kept out Balotelli's snapshot and Juan made a last-gasp interception to deny Eto'o.
Roma continued to produce chances and force extra time but Julio Cesar made a spectacular punched block from Riise's bullet shot and Vucinic drove an angled shot wide when through on goal.
The Giallorossi ended the game with ten men when Totti was shown straight red card for an ugly challenge on Balotelli.
Inter 1-0 Roma (HT: 1-0)
Scorers: Milito 40.
Inter: 12 Julio Cesar; 13 Maicon, 2 Cordoba (25 Samuel 39), 23 Materazzi, 26 Chivu; 4 Zanetti, 19 Cambiasso, 8 Thiago Motta; 10 Sneijder (45 Balotelli 5); 22 Milito, 9 Eto'o.
Subs not used: 1 Toldo, 5 Stankovic, 11 Muntari, 17 Mariga, 27 Pandev.
Coach: José Mourinho.
Roma: 27 Julio Sergio; 29 Burdisso (13 Marco Motta 46), 5 Mexes, 4 Juan, 17 Riise; 16 De Rossi, 7 Pizarro (10 Totti 46), 20 Perrotta; 11 Taddei, 30 Toni, 9 Vucinic.
Subs not used: 1 Lobont, 19 Baptista, 22 Tonetto, 33 Brighi, 94 Menez.
Coach: Claudio Ranieri.
Referee: Nicola Rizzoli (Bologna).
Booked: Burdisso 14, Materazzi 35, Perrotta 37, Mexes 45+2, Chivu 45+2, Samuel 53, Totti 63, Balotelli 87.
Sent off: Totti 88.