In a physical match worthy of being played in an NFL stadium, Inter Milan emerged with a 3-0 victory over Manchester City in an international friendly at M&T Bank Stadium on Saturday night in Baltimore.
The match included three yellow cards and a red card to Manchester City’s Patrick Vieira, who was sent off in the 21st minute for a hard foul to the head of Inter’s Marco Materazzi. Inter Milan’s Goran Pandev and Vincent Kompany of Manchester City were also both issued yellow cards for an altercation in the 19th minute.
Inter Milan got on the board shortly after Vieira’s red card, thanks to a well-placed ball from Esteban Cambiasso to Nsofor Victor Obinna, who promptly finished the chance in the 38th minute.
The scoring resumed early in the second half when Goran Pandev sent a high cross downfield to Obinna, who took on Manchester City’s Joleon Lescott near goal. Obinna’s resulting shot caromed off Lescott and past the Manchester City keeper for an own goal in the 54th minute.
Inter, the UEFA champions known for their defensive prowess under former head coach Jose Mourinho, displayed the attacking offensive style promised by new head coach Rafael Benitez, who took the helm in June. The final goal came off an unassisted shot from Cristiano Biraghi, who came on for Cristian Chivu in the 62nd minute with a flight of Inter Milan subs when the game was well in hand.
Manchester City struggled for most of the night, failing to capitalize on early chances and taking only six shots on goal to Inter Milan’s 14.
The European champions, who captured a first-ever Italian treble in May, will next head to Toronto to take on Greek club Panathinaikos FC on Tuesday before traveling to Texas to take on MLS side FC Dallas on Thursday.
The match was Manchester City’s last of their North American tour, during which they also faced Sporting Lisbon, the New York Red Bulls and Club America.
INTER – Nsofor Victor Obinna 33 (Esteban Cambiasso 19) 33
INTER – own goal (Joleon Lescott) 54
INTER – Cristiano Biraghi (unassisted) 74
INTER – Goran Pandev (caution) 19
MAN – Vincent Kompany (caution) 19
MAN – Patrick Vieira (ejection) 21
INTER – Cristian Chivu (caution) 31
MAN – Pablo Zabaleta (caution) 61
Inter Milan – Luca Castellazzi, Javier Zanetti (Felice Natalino 62), Ivan Ramiro Cordoba, Marco Materazzi (Nwankwo Obiora 84), Cristian Chivu (Cristiano Biraghi 62), MacDonald Mariga (Simone Dell’Agnello 78), Esteban Cambiasso (Dejan Stankovic 62), Joel Chukwuma Obi (Denis Albec 62), Coutinho (Mancini 72), Goran Pandev (Samuel Eto’o 62), Nsofor Victor Obinna (Jonathan Biabiany 72)
Manchester City – Joe Hart (Shay Given 46), Wayne Bride (Gregory Cunningham 46), Vincent Kompany (Stephen Ireland), Pablo Zabaleta, Adam Johnson, Gareth Barry (Shaun Wright-Phillips 56), Patrick Vieira, Kolo Toure (Dedryck Boyata), Yaya Toure (Joleon Lescott 46), Emmanuel Adebayor, Jo Silva (Micah Richards 30)
Referee: Baldomero Toledo
Referee's Assistants: Craig Lowry; Jason Cullum
4th Official: Mark Geiger
Weather: Cloudy and 80 degrees