Internazionale – Tottenham Hotspur: Tottenham target space behind Perišić but Inter come out on top (2-1)
In a tale of two teams inviting the other to do what they do best, Internazionale came out on top only because of bits of individual brilliance and some slices of luck in a frantic finale.
Tottenham Hotspur travelled to Stadio Giuseppe Meazza to face Inter Milan in this opening Champions League Group B fixture with both sides having experienced very different transfer windows, but similarly inconsistent starts to their domestic seasons.
Inter were widely congratulated for a successful summer transfer window, bringing in the likes of Radja Nainggolan, Kwando Asamoah and Stefan de Vrij among others. Tottenham, on the other hand, with a £850 million stadium currently under construction, did not sign any players over the summer - but claimed a successful window due to keeping hold of star players such as Harry Kane, Christian Eriksen and Dele Alli.
Both sides came into this match looking to kick-start their seasons after a series of mixed results. Inter have managed only one win and one draw in their opening four domestic fixtures. Tottenham started with a one hundred percent record in their opening three games, but came into this game on the back of consecutive defeats either side of the international break.
Following similar starts to the season each team made five changes from their starting eleven at the weekend and lined up in matching 4-2-3-1 formations. Inter started with Matías Vecino and Marcelo Brozović ahead of a back four. Asamoah provided an attacking threat from left back allowing Ivan Perišić, who lined up on the left wing, to drift more centrally. Nainggolan played in an advanced midfield position behind Inter captain Mauro Icardi.
With Hugo Lloris and Dele Alli on the injury list, Mauricio Pochettino could only explain the absence of Toby . . .