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Thomas Schaaf is resigned to watching the knockout phase on TV but he is at least determined to bow out on a high when his eliminated SV Werder Bremen team take on FC Internazionale Milano in their final Group A match. In contrast, the holders still have top spot to play for – Tottenham Hotspur FC travel to FC Twente leading the way thanks to a superior head-to-head record – and Rafael Benítez was keen not to underestimate the importance of a win in Germany.
Thomas Schaaf, Bremen coach
The match tomorrow is very important for us even though we're out of the competition. It's a big game and we're very happy to take on the titleholders. It's a big challenge for us and we want to not only compete with Inter, but to win. We have to give up making plans for this season and only look ahead to our next match – this is tomorrow and we want to win. I'm angry about the fact that we are already eliminated from this competition, and I know I'm going to be even angrier when I'm sat at home next year watching the big matches on TV.
Rafael Benítez, Inter coach
We could finish first in the group and this would be better than being in second place, so we want to win tomorrow and that's why we're here. It's good and important for the whole of Italian football that we stay as long as possible in the Champions League. I think we've done well so far. We cannot influence the match in Enschede but we can play for a victory here. I don't know which players will start yet but those who play will want to win. How important is this game for us? I would say ten out of ten and that's the same for every player who will enter the pitch.
Daniel Jensen (knee) and Marko Arnautović (groin) returned at the weekend. Tim Borowski (ankle), Sebastien Boenisch (cartilage damage), Naldo (knee) and Christian Vander (groin) remain sidelined. Speaking of the returning Claudio Pizarro (thigh) and Mikaël Silvestre (back), Schaaf said: "We'll play our best team possible and if I think they can help us, then they will play."
Sulley Muntari returned from a calf injury against S.S. Lazio on Friday but Dejan Stanković was withdrawn before half-time after suffering a thigh problem and is out. Julio César, Walter Samuel, Coutinho, Joel Obi, Maicon (all thigh) and Cristian Chivu (groin) are also on Inter's injury list, while Benítez confirmed that Lucio, Diego Milito and Wesley Sneijder did not travel.
04/12/10 VFL Wolfsburg 0-0 Bremen
Torsten Frings missed a 74th-minute penalty, his second successive failure from the spot. Schaaf's side have won four of their last 19 games in all competitions, losing nine.
03/12/10 Lazio 3-1 Inter
(Biava 26, Zárate 52, Hernanes 89; Pandev 74)
Former Lazio striker Goran Pandev's first Serie A goal since 7 February was not enough to avoid a fourth defeat in eight games – a run that includes two wins. Benítez's team have now suffered as many league losses, four, as in the whole of last season.
Did you know?
Bremen have never lost at home to Italian opposition, recording eight wins and six draws. They have beaten one Italian team at the Weserstadion already this season, UC Sampdoria 3-1 in the first leg of their play-off tie.
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