Adriano scores early goal as Nerazzurri finish pre-season tourney in second place behind Arsenal

AMSTERDAM - Inter beat Marco van Basten's Ajax 1-0 in the closing fixture of the 2008 LG Amsterdam Tournament and finish the pre-seaon spectacle in second place behind Arsenal, who drew 1-1 with Sevilla after their 3-2 win over the hosts.

José Mourinho handed Zlatan Ibrahimovic a place in his starting lineup, with the Swede partnering Adriano in attack. Figo and Jimenez started on the wings in midfield with Stankovic and Muntari in the middle, and Burdisso and Rivas continued at the centre of defence, with Maicon and Zanetti on the flanks and Toldo in goal

Figo had Inter's first chance of the game on two minutes but his right-foot shot found the sidenetting. Inter took the lead three minutes later when Adriano beat the offside trap, took Muntari's pinpoint through ball into the area and saw his fierce shot go in off Ajax keeper Stekelenburg.

Ibrahimovic went close in the 8th minute but Stekelenburg parried his low effort. The Ajax custodian pulled off another save from the Swede on 11 minutes, palming his free kick on to the post.

Van Basten's young team could have levelled through Cvitanich who crashed wide with just Toldo to beat after a defensive error by Rivas. The Croatia international then saw his close-range effort blocked by Rivas after Leonardo's fast cross was parried by Toldo.

Inter continued to churn out chances and Zanetti was unlucky on the half hour when he struck the outside of the left post after a darting run in from the left to collect Figo's pass. Four minutes before the break Adriano hooked wide on the turn after collecting Muntari's return ball to the edge of the Dutch box.

Mourinho brought on Cambiasso and Maxwell for Zanetti and Stankovic at the start of the second half while van Basten replaced Cvitanich with Sulejmani. The Dutch side were forced to make a second substitution just three minutes in when Douglas sustained a knee injury.

Ibrahimovic, who played a handful of minutes against Sevilla on Friday, stayed on in the second half and rose to head over Figo's outswinging cross, crashing Maicon's through ball against the post minutes later to show further signs of improvement.

Inter shut out Ajax in the second half and David Suazo fired wide minutes after coming on for Ibrahimovic in a double substitution that saw youngster Davide Santon replace Luis Jimenez and the Nerazzurri switch from 4-4-2 to 4-3-3.

Maicon got in on the act in the 71st, forcing Stekelenburg into a difficult save with a blistering right-footer from distance.

Toldo made fantastic saves from Sulejmani and Aissati in the final minutes as Ajax went close to an equaliser.

Ajax 0-1 Inter

Scorer: Adriano 5.

Ajax: 1 Stekelenburg; 15 van der Wiel, 17 Ogararu, 32 Slijngard, 34 Alderweireld; 19 Rommedahl (28 Anita 62), 22 De Jong, 29 Donald (18 Gabri de la Torre 48); 33 Martina (11 Aissati 75), 20 Cvitanich (10 Sulejmani 46), 23 Leonardo (9 Huntelaar 62).
Subs not used: 41 Ouwerkek, 37 Schilder.
Coach: Marco van Basten.

Inter: 1 Toldo; 13 Maicon, 24 Rivas, 16 Burdisso, 4 Zanetti (6 Maxwell 46); 11 Jimenez (39 Santon 67), 5 Stankovic (19 Cambiasso 46), 20 Muntari, 7 Figo (33 Mancini 61); 10 Adriano, 8 Ibrahimovic (29 Suazo 67).
Subs not used: 22 Orlandoni, 30 Pelé.
Coach: José Mourinho.

Referee: Kevin Blom.

Booked: Cvitanich 34, Figo 34.

LG Amsterdam Tournament final standings
Team - pts
Arsenal 8
Inter 4
Sevilla 3
Ajax 2

* 2 points for a win, 1 for a draw and 1 for each goal scored

Inter 0-0 Sevilla
Ajax 2-3 Arsenal

Arsenal 1-1 Sevilla
Ajax 0-1 Inter

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