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Diego limits Milan damage in Bremen

Werder Bremen 1-1 AC Milan
Diego struck late to deny Carlo Ancelotti's side a first-leg lead after Filippo Inzaghi's 36th-minute opener looked to have won it for the Serie A outfit.

Diego's 84th-minute strike earned Bremen a draw against Milan
Diego's 84th-minute strike earned Bremen a draw against Milan ©Getty Images

Diego denied AC Milan victory in the away leg of their UEFA Cup Round of 32 tie against Werder Bremen, but they could feel satisfied at having earned a 1-1 draw after Filippo Inzaghi handed them a 36th-minute lead.

Weakened side
Milan were without a number of top players including Kaká, Gennaro Gattuso and Alessandro Nesta while on-loan David Beckham started the game on the bench. Inzaghi nonetheless opened the scoring for the Italian visitors, with Diego finally equalising in the 84th minute after Bremen had created several great chances.

Early skirmishes
Alexandros Tziolis and Hugo Almeida both had early sights of goal for the Bundesliga club, while Clarence Seedorf raced through for Milan but was denied as Bremen keeper Tim Wiese sprang off his line to claim the ball. Wiese was in action again after 15 minutes, saving from Mathieu Flamini, while Dida was also busy at the other end to keep out a blast from Clemens Fritz.

Milan opener
Milan grabbed the initiative nine minutes before half-time as Flamini picked out Inzaghi who finished at the second attempt. Bremen pushed forward and Almeida sent a free-kick just wide while Dida made a fine stop to keep out Diego's dangerous low shot. Almeida also directed a header centimetres wide of the left post.

Diego leveller
Carlo Ancelotti's men stood up well in defence and looked dangerous on the counterattack, with Inzaghi threatening a second in the 66th minute when his strike from the right beat Wiese but came back off the crossbar. Bremen's efforts were rewarded, though, with an equaliser six minutes from time as a high ball into the box was nodded on by Almeida for Diego to chest down before beating Dida with a shot into the bottom right-hand corner. Thomas Schaaf's side almost snatched a winner at the death when Massimo Ambrosini's headed against his own crossbar under pressure.