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|Attempts off target||61||67|
After three Serie A draws in succession, FC Internazionale Milano will attempt a return to winning ways when they play host to Chelsea FC in the opening leg of their UEFA Champions League first knockout round tie with Lúcio confident his team will be "focused and careful".
Having had defenders Iván Córdoba and Walter Samuel sent off in a goalless draw with UC Sampdoria on Saturday, their fellow centre-back has warned his team-mates to be watchful but to also try and maintain an aggressive edge to their performance. That aside, the Brazilian preferred not to discuss domestic matters with such a high-profile match looming. "I don't want to talk about what's happening in Serie A, we are here to play a Champions League game and we want to be fully focused on this now," said the 31-year-old. "We need to be."
The Nerazzurri have been eliminated at this stage of the competition for the last three seasons and, are facing English opposition again having lost to Manchester United FC last term and Liverpool FC in 2007/08. "We've studied Chelsea very well and, of course, we know they have wonderful players, but we also have fantastic players," added Lúcio. "Whenever we go on to the pitch, we always think we are going to win; this gives us motivation. Every game is important, especially if it is a Champions League one. Chelsea are a big team and we can feel the emotion of playing in such an important game."
While Inter will be out to establish a lead to take to London, the match also offers the Nerazzurri the chance to restore some Italian pride after AC Milan and ACF Fiorentina lost their first legs last week to United and FC Bayern München respectively. "This is an important match for everybody here and of course we want to go through," said Lúcio. "We have two important games to play and I am sure that our motivation and optimism can be determining factors."
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