Quarter-final: second leg
First leg: Inter 2-1 Villarreal
Villarreal and Internazionale go into a finely poised quarter-final on Tuesday night with Inter holding a slender 2-1 lead from the first leg at the San Siro last week.
Despite that victory, coach Roberto Mancini has plenty of respect for his opponents.
“This Villarreal team is the most unique of all the eight sides left in the competition,” said Mancini. “They know how to defend cleverly and they enjoy doing it.
“They are quite happy to go 1-0 up and try to hold on to that. But they are also a team with exceptional creative and goalscoring talent and they can do great damage up front.
“Against Villarreal you cannot make mistakes – either when you have the chance to score or when you are defending. But we have come here to try and impose our own game and win this match.”
Coach Roberto Mancini has to wait for news on Portuguese winger Luis Figo who spent Saturday training alone.
Villarreal have only lost one of 17 European home games and have kept clean sheets in 13, but their wins in the Champions League have always been narrow.
Villarreal’s main problem is their home record. They have won just one of their home Champions League matches this season.
“We know how Inter are going to play and what preoccupies me is ensuring that we score and they do not,” said coach ManuelPellegrini.
One injury concern for Villarreal is Rodriguez who has a sore ankle and faces a late fitness test. He and Quique Alvarezshould line up at the back together.
“Who knows whether this will turn out to be the biggest game of my life, but right now it looks like being a brilliant night,” admitted Álvarez.
“This is a great competition in which we are the new boys and nobody outside this club believed we could, or would, get this far.”
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