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Final Bremen flourish flattens Inter

SV Werder Bremen 3-0 FC Internazionale Milano
Sebastian Prödl, Marko Arnautović and Claudio Pizarro struck as Thomas Schaaf's side bowed out with an emphatic win against the holders.

Final Bremen flourish flattens Inter
Final Bremen flourish flattens Inter ©UEFA.com

SV Werder Bremen produced a last hurrah before bringing the curtain down on their UEFA Champions League campaign with a 3-0 defeat of reigning champions FC Internazionale Milano.

The German side were already destined to finish bottom of Group A, but goals from Sebastian Prödl and former Inter forward Marko Arnautović in a ten-minute spell either side of half-time put them in charge. A late Claudio Pizarro strike sealed Bremen's maiden win in this season's group stage, and dashed the visitors' ambitions of finishing top of the section.

The first half took time to warm up, though the bone-chilling weather hardly helped. Werder adapted quickest, and when Hugo Almeida chested down Aaron Hunt's diagonal ball only a wonderful fingertip save from Paolo Orlandoni prevented the Portuguese international's instant volley from dipping in.

The 38-year-old Orlandoni was surprisingly handed his UEFA Champions League debut by Rafael Benítez, and the veteran was almost beaten when Hunt raced to the byline before flashing a ball across goal that ricocheted off Esteban Cambiasso. The Argentinian – drafted into the back four as a last-minute replacement for Marco Materazzi – was fortunate to see the ball drift beyond the far post.

With half-time approaching, Bremen's pressure finally told as Prödl climbed highest to reach Torsten Frings' corner, the Austrian's header touching off Iván Córdoba on its way into the net.

Inter were given no time to respond after the break as Bremen quickly eased two goals in front with a sweeping build-up that led to Hugo Almeida receiving the ball wide left, and his cross was sweetly volleyed in at the near post by Arnautović. The 21-year-old, who played three Serie A matches on loan at Inter last season, almost added another soon after, but having climbed above Felice Natalino, headed over.

Inter forays forward were rare, though they passed up a glorious opportunity to reduce the deficit when Goran Pandev's angled ball rebounded off a post, and Cambiasso could only stab the rebound wide as Tim Wiese advanced.

Pandev tested Wiese once again with a low shot, but Bremen proved the more threatening and after both Per Mertesacker and Hunt struck the woodwork, Pizarro turned beautifully before dispatching a low shot beyond Orlandoni. Pandev struck the bar with the game's final kick, but it was too little far too late as Bremen extended their unbeaten record to a creditable 15 home games against Italian opposition.