Arguably the key encounter in this group takes place in Milan tonight, as Inter, still smarting from their opening day defeat to Sporting, welcome German champions Bayern Munich.
“We’ve played one and lost one so it’s essential for us to get some points on the board,” said Inter coach Roberto Mancini. “We can’t afford to be chasing already at this early stage. The players need to think before they act. They must think calmly and do the right things.”
“Bayern are a very good side. They are physical, play good football and have great belief. So we need to keep our concentration, which means we mustn’t go charging forward at all times.
“Goals can come at any stage. It doesn’t matter when you score but what you can’t do is give Bayern a chance to show us what they can do.”
Inter will be without the suspended Patrick Vieira and injured Esteban Cambiasso, leaving Olivier Dacourt and Dejan Stankovi? to do the donkey work in midfield.
For Bayern coach Felix Magath, the pressure is off his team following their opening day victory over Spartak Moscow.
“The win against Spartak has put us in a good position because we don’t have to win, as Inter do after losing in Lisbon, so we are under no particular pressure,” he said.
“Inter were already strong last year and after the signings they made in the summer they are even stronger now. But I still think they are trying to gel and we will try to exploit that.”
Bayern have a miserable record in Italy, losing their last six matches in the country. But, Magath is confident of ending that run.
“Just because we didn’t win last year doesn’t mean we can’t go all the way this time around,” he declared. We’ve not come to defend, we’ve come to play an open game.” Inter have been warned.
Júlio César; Maicon, Marco Materazzi, Iván Córdoba, Fabio Grosso; Javier Zanetti, Olivier Dacourt, Dejan Stankovi?, Luís Figo; Hernán Crespo, Zlatan Ibrahimovic.
Oliver Kahn; Willy Sagnol, Daniel Van Buyten, Lucio, Philipp Lahm; Hasan Salihamidzic, Martin Demichelis, Mark van Bommel, Bastian Schweinsteiger; Claudio Pizarro, Roque Santa Cruz.