Dzeko insists Inter must be 'careful' despite 2-0 win over AC Milan

‘Only great teams arrive in the semi-finals’: Inter Milan’s Edin Dzeko insists they have to be ‘careful’ despite 2-0 win over AC Milan in the first leg of their Champions League tie, while Owen Hargreaves praises the striker as ‘the perfect centre forward’

  • AC Milan lost 2-0 to Inter in the first leg of their Champions League semi-final
  • Edin Dzeko and Henrikh Mkhitaryan scored the two goals in the first 11 minutes 
  • Dzeko has insisted Inter will not get overconfident despite the impressive win 

Inter Milan striker Edin Dzeko has insisted his side will not suffer from overconfidence after their 2-0 win derby over AC Milan in the first leg of their Champions League semi-final.

Dzeko opened the scoring after just eight minutes with an excellent volley that flew past Mike Maignan into the top right corner.

Henrikh Mikhitaryan doubled the lead three minutes later, and Simone Izaghi’s side were lucky not go three down after half an hour when an Inter penalty was controversially overturned.

Dzeko, who now has 14 goals this season despite turning 37 in March, remained level-headed after the win, as he told BT Sport: ‘It feels very good, especially because it’s a derby. On paper we played away so it’s a great result.’

‘We’re an experienced team and we know what we have done today. We have a great result for the second leg but nothing is yet finished because in the Champions League only great teams arrive in the semi-finals, so we have to be careful, we have to be concentrated. 

Edin Dzeko has insisted Inter Milan will not get overconfident despite winning 2-0 in the first leg of their Champions League semi-final against AC Milan

The 37-year-old striker opened the scoring for Simone Inzaghi’s side after just eight minutes

‘We will be definitely even more concentrated for the second leg. We have to be careful because they’re still a good team but if we play like we did today we are on a good route.’

English fans will likely remember Dzeko best for a successful five-year spell at Man City, but he has enjoyed something of an Indian Summer since moving to Serie A in 2015.

His European record is particularly impressive, with 39 goals in 71 games across eight seasons for Roma and Inter.

Owen Hargreaves was full of praise for the striker, as he said on BT Sport: ‘Dzeko looked amazing, he looked sharp and fit. He’s always been a brilliant finisher with his weaker left foot but he led the line. 

‘He’s the perfect centre forward because he’s a target man. You can play it up to him, long balls and feed it off him but he’s a great finisher as well.’

Steven Gerrard felt that Inter had ‘played to Dzeko’s strengths’ and praised his ‘hold up play’, while Peter Crouch called him ‘vastly underrated’.

Stefano Pioli’s AC Milan side are now left with a tough task ahead of them when they play the second leg in just six days time.

And the AC Milan boss admitted that his side got things wrong ‘from a tactical and mental point of view’ – and promised that his side would bring a ‘different performance’ on their return to the San Siro.  

The result means AC Milan are left with a mountain to climb in the second leg next week

Owen Hargreaves praised Dzeko as ‘the perfect centre forward’ after the game

‘We will try to do better in the second leg. I think they got the better of the tackles and second balls. The match went badly from a tactical and mental point of view.

‘We have to start from the attitude of the second half. We had the chances to get the game back on track.

‘We will have to put in an absolutely different performance from tonight’s. For the boys right now there is disappointment but also awareness of overturning the second leg.’ 

The other semi will conclude next Wednesday as Man City take on Real Madrid in the second leg after drawing the first 1-1 on Tuesday. 

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