FC Internazionale Milano coach Roberto Mancini revealed a change of tactics was the key to his side recovering from two goals down to beat PFC CSKA Moskva 4-2.
FC Internazionale Milano coach Roberto Mancini revealed a change of tactics was key to his side recovering from two goals down to beat PFC CSKA Moskva 4-2 while his opposite number Valeri Gazzaev drew strength from a good performance against a "great Inter side". With defeat confirming CSKA cannot reach the knockout stage, Gazzaev set his sights on the race for third spot in Group G and a place in the UEFA Cup.
Roberto Mancini, Inter coach
In my opinion it was a beautiful game to watch. I think their two goals woke us up as we were sleeping a bit at the start of the game. There were not many fans tonight and we did not have the right mental approach in the warm-up and in the early stages of the game. Fortunately my players did very well to come back quickly from 2-0 down. Should [Zlatan] Ibrahimović win the Ballon d'Or? I don't know if he will win it this season but I believe he will win that trophy more than once during his career. He was outstanding.
CSKA are very strong in attack. We started with three centre-backs but we were struggling a bit with that system and not pushing much on the flanks, so I decided to move [Cristian] Chivu on to the left and Maxwell into midfield. I think we improved after that change. I think it's important to play the return leg at home in the Round of 16 so we want to win the next home game [against Fenerbahçe SK] to finish first in our group. I think it could give us a good advantage for the rest of the competition.
Valeri Gazzaev, CSKA coach
First of all I want to congratulate Inter because they played very well and the victory was fully deserved. We played very well in the first half but then we lost a few players through injury and Inter's experience made the difference in the second. Inter's performance confirmed what I said yesterday about Italian football. Inter are a great side, [AC] Milan are European champions and Italy are world champions.
I think the level of Italian football is still as good as it gets, no doubt about that. Inter were missing many players but Mancini has almost two teams to pick players from considering how big and good their squad is. We still have a chance of finishing third in the group and we will try to do it. I don't have anything particular to say to my players – especially my defenders – because I think they played a good game overall.
We didn't manage to control the Inter forwards but we have to give them credit because they played a great game. I think our forwards also played very well because we scored two goals and created other opportunities. I think the result would have been different if we had managed to keep the 2-0 lead a bit longer but unfortunately we weren't able to. However, I'm satisfied because we played two balanced games against a very strong team.