Inter progress after last-gasp win

Late goal from Pandev puts Inter into Champions League quarters as United edge past Marseille.

    It was last-minute heartbreak at the Allianz-Arena stadium for Bayern Munich [AFP]

    Goran Pandev saved the blushes of defending European champions Inter Milan with a late winner to send his team into the quarter-finals of the Champions League with a dramatic 3-2 victory over Bayern Munich on Tuesday.

    Pandev's goal in the 88th minute put the two teams level at 3-3 on aggregate, but Inter advanced on the away goals rule after losing the home leg 1-0.

    In a similar nervy encounter, Javier Hernandez struck twice to lift Manchester United to a nervous 2-1 win over Olympique Marseille, booking the English side a place in the quarters for the fifth year in a row.

    The Mexican striker scored from close range after five minutes and he latched on to a Ryan Giggs pass to double the lead 15 minutes from time.


    Inter got off to a perfect start, with Eto'o notching his eighth goal of the competition. Pandev sent in a through ball and the Cameroon striker beat the offside trap to slot the ball through the legs of Bayern goalkeeper Thomas Kraft.

    Bayern took time to recover but when they did, the home side dominated Inter until the end of the first half.

    Inter's goal was also their only shot on target in the first 45 minutes.

    Gomez equalised with his eighth Champions League goal after a mistake by Inter goalkeeper Julio Cesar.

    Cesar let Arjen Robben's attempt from 20 yards bounce off his chest and Gomez pounced to hook the ball over the goalkeeper.

    The Brazilian did well to punch away another effort by Gomez in the 26th minute, but he was helpless when Mueller put Bayern ahead.

    Robben's pass struck the foot of Lucio and bounced straight into the path of Mueller, who had no trouble lifting the ball past Cesar.

    Poor start

    Franck Ribery made a poor start, losing possession several times, but he recovered in style late in the first half.

    The Frenchman easily went past Andrea Ranocchia and ran clear to face Cesar but the goalkeeper tipped Ribery's shot over the crossbar.

    Ribery's cross to Gomez at the far post nearly produced a third for Bayern.

    Results & fixtures

    Tuesday March 15

     Bayern 2-3 Inter Milan
     Man Utd 2-1 Marseille

    Wednesday March 16

     Chelsea v FC Copenhagen
     Real Madrid v Lyon

    Gomez's effort found its way past Cesar, with the ball trickling across the goal. Ranocchia cleared from the line but his effort struck Mueller and the ball bounced off the post.

    The goal scoring chances continued, with a late mistake by Ranocchia then turning into a perfect pass for Robben, who shot wide.

    Ribery opened the way for Gomez at the start of the second half, but Cesar scooped the ball, while a tremendous volley by Gomez off a cross by Ribery in the 62nd was saved by Cesar.

    At the other end, Pandev displayed superb control in taming a long pass, but his left-foot volley sailed high, then shot wide a few minutes later.

    Sneijder had a good opportunity in the 73rd but also shot wide as Bayern lost their composure.


    At Old Trafford, Sir Alex Ferguson's side were far from convincing for long periods, but the predatory finishing of Mexico striker Hernandez moved United into the last eight with a 2-1 aggregate victory.

    This was Ferguson's 100th Champions League victory and few of the previous 99 would have caused him quite so much anxiety as this.

    Marseille gave United's defence too many scares for the Scot's liking and Wes Brown's late own goal ensured a tense finish for the English Premier League leaders.

    SOURCE: Agencies


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