Goalscorer Zlatan Ibrahimović told uefa.com that FC Internazionale Milano "can breathe a little bit easier" after a 3-0 win saw them seal top spot in Group G.
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Zlatan Ibrahimović paid homage to his team-mates after his goal in FC Internazionale Milano's 3-0 win against Fenerbahçe SK saw him keep pace with Cristiano Ronaldo at the top of the UEFA Champions League scorers' chart.
'All very happy'
Ibrahimović coolly slotted in his side's second goal midway though the second half after Julio Cruz had opened the scoring eleven minutes earlier. Luis Antonio Jiménez then completed the win with a late strike that guaranteed the Nerazzurri qualification for the knockout stage as Group G winners with 12 point from five games. "We are all very happy in the dressing room because we are through to the next stage and now we can breathe a little bit easier," Ibrahimović told uefa.com.
The goal briefly put the Sweden striker top of the 2007/08 scorers table only for Manchester United FC's Cristiano Ronaldo to strike late on against Sporting Clube de Portugal to join him on five group stage goals. "I'm pleased that I got the goal but the important thing is that the team won," explained Ibrahimović. "I'm not at all interested in the top goalscorer award. If I've scored it's thanks to my team-mates. We win together and we lose together and it is them I must thank for helping me score."
After a quiet first half Ibrahimović struck on 66 minutes when Cruz stepped over Cristian Chivu's left-wing cross. He said: "It was a great cross from Chivu and Julio [Cruz] left it for me. I controlled it and then saw Roberto Carlos in front of me so thought I'd better not try to dribble past him. I saw the gap, had a shot and luckily it went in. It was an important goal but I didn't think the match was over yet because at this level the opposition are never out of it. Luckily, we made it 3-0 and we are now through.
Champions League resolve
"We didn't play very well in the first half," he added. "We've had a lot of players away on international duty and we didn't get a good start but in the second half we managed to find more space and express ourselves and we deserved the goals. Last year we didn't do so well in this competition because we had a lot of new players in the side and also we were concentrating on winning the league. You cannot always choose what to win and of course we want to win the Scudetto again but now we feel that we have what it takes to do well in the Champions League."