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Milan set up Inter showdown

Published: Thursday 24 April 2003, 0.40CET
AC Milan 3-2 AFC Ajax (Agg: 3-2) Milan will face Internazionale FC in the semi-finals.

Match statistics

MilanAjax

Goals scored3
 
2
Attempts on target10
 
4
Attempts off target5
 
7
Corners9
 
2
Offsides2
 
6
Fouls committed22
 
17
Yellow cards2
 
1
Red cards0
 
0

Standings

 
Published: Thursday 24 April 2003, 0.40CET

Milan set up Inter showdown

AC Milan 3-2 AFC Ajax (Agg: 3-2) Milan will face Internazionale FC in the semi-finals.

A Jon Dahl Tomasson goal a minute into added time gave AC Milan a 3-2 win against AFC Ajax at San Siro and set up an intriguing meeting with neighbours Internazionale FC in the semi-finals of the UEFA Champions League.

Added-time drama
Ajax had twice equalised, and seemed to be heading through on away goals, but Tomasson's last-gasp strike left the away side with no time to respond. Filippo Inzaghi burst clear on to a flick-on and lifted the ball over the onrushing Bogdan Lobont, and Tomasson, introduced as a late substitute, made sure, touching the ball over the line.

Selection dilemma
Milan coach Carlo Ancelotti faced a number of selection problems ahead of the match, particularly in midfield, with Gennaro Gattuso suspended and Clarence Seedorf and Andrea Pirlo both ruled out for the rest of the season through injury. Cristian Brocchi and Massimo Ambrosini came into midfield, while Ajax were without Rafael van der Vaart through concussion.

Early chances
Both sides looked eager to press forward in the opening exchanges, with Rui Costa and Andriy Shevchenko both shooting wide for Milan, while Wesley Sneijder and Steven Pienaar went close for Ajax.

Spectacular save
After 23 minutes, Milan came even closer to taking the lead. Rui Costa's free-kick led to a huge goalmouth scramble, and the ball was eventually laid back to Brocchi. His low effort took a significant deflection off Petri Pasanen and seemed to have been diverted into the top left-hand corner, but Lobont reacted quickly to produce a remarkable stop, tipping the ball away.

Powerful header
On the half-hour, Milan did finally break through. Rui Costa's pass freed Shevchenko down the right and his deflected cross fell kindly for Inzaghi, who made no mistake, heading powerfully past Lobont from close range.

Golden chance
Having struggled to create chances in the first half, Ajax went close to a crucial away goal six minutes into the second period as Andy van der Meyde's cross was misjudged by Dida, but Zlatan Ibrahimovic could only direct his header wide.

Away goal
On the hour, Inzaghi missed a golden chance to double Milan's advantage, heading wide when unmarked in front of goal, and it seemed that miss would be costly four minutes later, as Van der Meyde's low cross gave substitute Jari Litmanen an unmissable chance, which he duly tapped into an empty net.

Instant response
However, parity lasted less than 90 seconds, as Inzaghi's cross was deflected off Pasanen and gave Shevchenko a simple header. Ajax refused to let their heads drop, and deservedly drew level 12 minutes from time, with Van der Meyde again providing the chance. His cross was flicked on by Ibrahimovic and met by Pienaar at the far post, whose first attempt was blocked but, grounded, he somehow reached the ball ahead of Paolo Maldini and Alessandro Nesta and swept past a wrong-footed Dida.

Shevchenko denied
The goal gave Ajax the advantage, and it seemed Milan's chance had gone seven minutes from time as Shevchenko burst clear, but his shot was blocked by Lobont's leg, only for Tomasson's dramatic late intervention.

Last updated: 01/02/12 10.44CET

http://www.uefa.com/uefachampionsleague/season=2002/matches/round=1638/match=1041698/postmatch/report/index.html#milan+inter+showdown

Lineups

milan

Milan

ajax

Ajax

12
DidaDida (GK)
1
LobonţBogdan Lobonţ (GK)
3
MaldiniPaolo Maldini (C)
2
TrabelsiHatem Trabelsi
4
KaladzeKakha Kaladze
Substitution80
5
ChivuCristian Chivu (C)
7
ShevchenkoAndriy Shevchenko
Goal65
7
Van der MeydeAndy van der Meyde
Substitution89
9
F. InzaghiFilippo Inzaghi
Goal30
9
IbrahimovićZlatan Ibrahimović
10
Rui CostaRui Costa
Substitution85
10
PienaarSteven Pienaar
Goal78
Substitution84
13
NestaAlessandro Nesta
16
PasanenPetri Pasanen
Yellow Card76
14
ŠimićDario Šimić
Substitution83
18
O'BrienJohn O'Brien
19
CostacurtaAlessandro Costacurta
Yellow Card62
22
YakubuAbubakari Yakubu
23
AmbrosiniMassimo Ambrosini
Yellow Card18
24
Van DammeJelle Van Damme
Substitution46
32
BrocchiCristian Brocchi
37
SneijderWesley Sneijder

Substitutes

18
AbbiatiChristian Abbiati (GK)
21
DidulicaJoey Didulica (GK)
2
HelvegThomas Helveg
3
BergdølmoAndré Bergdølmo
Substitution89
5
RedondoFernando Redondo
Substitution85
8
WitschgeRichard Witschge
11
RivaldoRivaldo
Substitution80
20
LitmanenJari Litmanen
Substitution46
Goal63
15
TomassonJon Dahl Tomasson
Substitution83
Goal90+1
26
N. de JongNigel de Jong
Substitution84
24
LaursenMartin Laursen
28
BoukhariNourdin Boukhari
28
Dalla BonaSamuele Dalla Bona

Coach

Carlo Ancelotti (ITA) Ronald Koeman (NED)

Referee

Manuel Mejuto González (ESP)

Assistant referees

Oscar David Martinez Samaniego (ESP), Rafael Guerrero Alonso (ESP)

Fourth official

Carlos Megia Davila (ESP)

Legend:

  • GoalsGoals
  • Own goalOwn goal
  • PenaltiesPenalties
  • Missed PenaltiesMissed Penalties
  • reds_cardRed Cards
  • yellow_cardsYellow cards
  • yellow_red_cardsYellow/red card
  • SubstitutionSubstitution
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