Thursday, January 6, 2011
Leonardo notches win for Inter in debut match as coach; AC Milan hold off Cagliari
New Inter Milan coach Leonardo Nascimento de Araujo got off to a flying start with a 3-1 win for Inter over Napoli today, while league leaders AC Milan consolidated their place at the top of the Serie A table with a 1-0 win over Cagliari. Brazilian midfielder Thiago Motta opened the scoring for Inter in the third minute after some fine one touch passing between Goran Pandev, Dejan Stankovic and Motta, who finally volleyed the ball into the bottom right corner of the net, 18 yards from goal. Michele Pazienza equalized for Napoli with a header off a corner kick in the 25th minute, but Esteban Cambiasso put Inter back in front by heading home a Maicon cross in the 37th minute. Motta sealed Leonardo's first victory as coach with yet another header goal for the match, this time from an Inter corner in the 55th minute. Inter secured their victory without suspended striker Samuel Eto and the injured Wesley Sneijder and Julio Cesar. Leaders AC Milan now have 39 points from 18 games, whereas Inter occupy 6th place with 26 points from 16 games.