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Kiev stages titanic tussle

Published: Tuesday 9 December 2003, 22.03CET
Two late goals transformed FC Dynamo Kyiv's Group B campaign - and mean they must beat FC Internazionale.

Tournament statistics

Dynamo KyivInternazionale

Goals scored8
Attempts on target34
Attempts off target43
Fouls committed99
Yellow cards7
Red cards0

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Published: Tuesday 9 December 2003, 22.03CET

Kiev stages titanic tussle

Two late goals transformed FC Dynamo Kyiv's Group B campaign - and mean they must beat FC Internazionale.

Two last-gasp goals have turned FC Dynamo Kyiv's UEFA Champions League campaign on its head - and mean they can afford nothing less than victory at home against FC Internazionale.

Dramatic defetas
Dynamo led Group B after Matchday 3, ahead of trips to Arsenal FC and FC Lokomotiv Moskva. But in the final minutes of each game probable draws were turned into 1-0 and 3-2 away defeats. So instead of leading the way, Dynamo go into the final game at the foot of the table, a point adrift of Inter and Arsenal and two behind Lokomotiv. Indeed, even Dynamo's other loss in the group came via an added-time Christian Vieri header in Milan.

Injury woes
Dynamo's cause is not helped by injuries to key players. Andriy Husin is still recovering from surgery on his hip in September, while Roberto Nanni had a knee operation on Friday. Denis Onishenko has a calf injury and Serhiy Fedorov a damaged foot. However, coach Olexiy Mykhaylichenko has the rest of his squad fit and raring to go after a training camp in Italy.

Productive trip
"Our ten days in Italy were very productive," Mykhaylichenko said on the eve of Wednesday's game. "The guys have done all we expected from them, and we also played two friendlies along the way. The results do not matter, but I am happy there were a lot of chances created by our sides. We also intend to show our opponents a surprising style which will be uncomfortable for them - you can find out what it is tomorrow."

Win needed
Inter's task is similar to Dynamo's despite their relatively lofty position. Defeat - as for the home side - would leave them out of Europe, while a draw would only take them into the last 16, rather than the UEFA Cup, if Lokomotiv win at Arsenal. So three points is Inter's aim, and having received a huge setback with a 5-1 home loss to Arsenal on Matchday 5, the Serie A club have since won 3-1 at Juventus FC and 2-1 against AC Perugia to boost their morale.

'Stay calm'
"Let us hope we can play like we played against Juventus," said Inter midfield player Matias Almeyda. "On that occasion the whole team did well and played good football. I think it will be a good game against Dynamo, we will have to try and be intelligent and stay calm."
No rush
Patience, certainly, is Almeyda's watchword. "The match lasts 90 minutes," he added. "We cannot rush it. We will try not to give up space and play tight so we can hit them at the right moment. We are growing match by match and we must continue on this path."

Possible omens?
Inter will take heart from the fact that, on the final day of both group stages last season, they sealed away wins - against AFC Ajax and Bayer 04 Leverkusen - to secure their qualification. Dynamo, on the other hand, were beaten at home by an Italian club - Juventus - on Matchday 6, when victory would have taken them through. Mykhaylichenko will be hoping history does not repeat itself.

Last updated: 09/12/03 19.56CET