As Inter prepare to host Barcelona, we recall their thrilling semi-final opener in 2010 and ask: where are they now?
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Aiming to become the first club to retain the trophy since AC Milan in 1989/90, Josep Guardiola's Barcelona swaggered into Italy's fashion capital for their semi-final opener with Inter – admittedly, via a long coach journey after flights across Europe had been grounded.
Barça had been a cut above José Mourinho's side during the group stage, but it was a different story in the last four as the hosts produced a counterattacking masterclass. Wesley Sneijder, Maicon and Diego Milito all responded to Pedro Rodríguez's opener, giving the Serie A outfit a platform to reach the final – and eventually lift the trophy.
Widely regarded as the best right-back in the world at the time, Maicon's 48th-minute strike – a close-range prod from Milito's cross – gave Inter a lead they would not relinquish in the tie, although he paid for his efforts that night by losing a tooth in a challenge with Lionel Messi. That season's final triumph against Bayern München represented the high point of the Brazilian's career, which also brought a pair of Copa América titles. Had spells at Manchester City and Roma before retiring in Brazil in 2017.
2 Goran Pandev
Still plying his trade in Italy with Genoa, Pandev, now 35, became the first Macedonian to win the UEFA Champions League when Inter triumphed in Madrid that May. The versatile forward had only joined from Lazio four months prior but went on to feature in every knockout game bar the return leg at the Camp Nou. His country's all-time top scorer with 33 goals, Pandev is approaching a century of international caps.
3 Samuel Eto'o
Cameroon's most decorated player, Eto'o won the UEFA Champions League with both Barça (twice) and Inter, scoring in the 2006 and 2009 finals. After an impressive spell with Mallorca, the striker headed to Barcelona in 2004 and spent five years there, scoring 108 goals in 144 Liga games. He picked up three Spanish titles, later adding a Serie A crown with Inter, and has since had stints in Russia, England and Turkey. Now 37, he joined Qatar SC in August.
4 Víctor Valdés
Valdés retired in January 2018 following a trophy-laden career. The goalkeeper – whose 535 Blaugrana appearances place him sixth in club history – won the Spanish Liga six times and the UEFA Champions League on three occasions at Camp Nou. He joined Manchester United in 2015, before hanging up his gloves following a season with Middlesbrough.
5 Seydou Keita
Keita called time on his playing career in 2017 after a season in Qatar with el-Jaish. A Mali great, the central midfielder joined Barcelona from Sevilla at the age of 28 and although he was in and out of the starting line-up during his four years in Catalonia, he won two UEFA Champions League titles and three Spanish Ligas. Spells at Valencia (where his uncle Salif played with distinction in the 1970s) and Roma followed, rounding off a European career that had begun when Marseille signed Keita from CSK Bamako in 1997.
At the time of his 2017 retirement, the Brazilian left-back was the most decorated player in European football with 36 major honours. That prodigious haul came thanks to a career spent at some of the continent's grandest clubs, including Ajax, Inter, Barcelona and Paris. Maxwell joined Barcelona from Inter in 2009 and, although on the losing side on this occasion, went on to win the UEFA Champions League with the Catalan giants in 2011. One of Zlatan Ibrahimović's closest friends, Maxwell is now sporting coordinator at Paris, where he finished his career.
Not pictured: Diego Milito
With his brother Gabriel watching from the Barcelona bench, the striker completed his run of finding the net in every home knockout game that season, creating the first two goals before adding the third. Nicknamed El Príncipe (the Prince), Milito hit his professional peak in early 2010, scoring a fine double against Bayern in the showpiece, three goals in the final four Serie A games of the campaign to seal the Scudetto and the only goal against Roma in the Coppa Italia final. He remained at Inter until 2014, ending his career two years later where it had all begun with Racing Club in his native Argentina.
Not pictured: Lionel Messi
Messi came into this fixture having scored 16 goals in his previous 12 games – including all four in the quarter-final second leg against Arsenal – but was shackled by compatriot Javier Zanetti over the course of the tie. To this day, Inter remain one of only six clubs Messi has not scored against in Europe. The rest of Messi's story is as familiar as it is glorious: the Argentinian has won four UEFA Champions League titles with Barcelona and is eyeing a fifth this campaign.
Not pictured: José Mourinho
Architect of Inter's two-legged triumph against Barça – which he described as "the greatest moment of my career" – Mourinho's 2009/10 treble with the Nerazzurri remains one of his finest achievements. Having won the 2003/04 UEFA Champions League with Porto, the Portuguese then led Chelsea to back-to-back domestic titles and guided Real Madrid to the 2011/12 Spanish Liga – ahead of Guardiola's Barcelona. He won the Premier League with Chelsea again in 2014/15 and is now in charge of Manchester United, hoping to become the first coach to lift the European Cup with three different clubs.
Not pictured: Josep Guardiola
Now Mourinho's cross-city adversary in Manchester, Guardiola took Barcelona to extraordinary success between 2008 and 2012, winning 14 of a possible 19 trophies, including the UEFA Champions League twice. He then scooped three Bundesliga titles with Bayern between 2013 and 2016, before steering Manchester City to the English championship last season with a record-breaking century of points.
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