Ratings by Thomas Millar.
Inter Milan defeated Benfica 2-0 in the first leg of the Champions League quarterfinal at the Estadio da Luz after an all-round phenomenal performance which is reflected in the SempreInter.com Inter Milan player ratings.
The Nerazzurri started the game somewhat on the back foot but worked themselves into the game the longer the half continued and by the end of it the feeling was they could and should have probably scored at least one goal.
Benfica created one or two good chances but André Onana made a vintage Onana chest save to keep the home side at bay.
In the second half, Benfica started the half just like they did the first only much quicker and higher passing tempo causing Inter problems.
However, the Nerazzurri remained composed and compact riding the initial storm out before scoreing the opening goal after Alessandro Bastoni hit a wonderful cross which Nicolo Barella headed home in the 51st minute.
Benfica created a couple of really good chances which Denzel Dumfries making a last ditch goal-line clearance saving a certain goal, just like against Porto in the round of last 16 in Oporto.
The same Dumfries won Inter a penalty when his cross hit former Nerazzurri midfielder Joao Mario’s arm which was raised above his head, a spot-kick converted by substitute Romelu Lukaku.
Inter Milan Player Ratings Vs Benfica
André Onana – 8: Mr. Champions League himself. Made incredible saves to keep Inter level in the first half and to retain their lead at the end of the game. What a goalkeeper.
Matteo Darmian – 6,5: Another day, another quality performance from Matteo “Mr. Reliable” Darmian. Made crucial tackles and let nothing past him today. Well done.
Francesco Acerbi – 6,5: Solid display from the veteran. Locked it down in the middle of the back-three and did his bit. Becoming one of Inter’s most important players.
Alessandro Bastoni – 8: UEFA named Man of the Match. Incredible defensive display and even better offensive play. His long -balls never tire, and are so satisfying to watch.
Denzel Dumfries – 6,5: Put his physically to use today, always winning his duels. Had an enormous chance in the second half that should have been finished.
Nicolo Barella – 8: His first headed goal in Nerazzurri colours and what an occasion to score. Huge performance, opening the score and continued to look dangerous.
Marcelo Brozovic – 8,5 (MOTM): Epic Brozo finally returned today. An absolute machine in the midfield, retaining, intercepting and recycling the ball. He was everywhere.
Henrikh Mkhitaryan – 6,5: Could tell his motivation was there and he put in effort, but was sadly overshadowed by his two midfield partners. Had some good chances.
Federico Dimarco – 6: Struggled heavily in the first half and it was no surprise when he was brought off. Nearly gifted a goal to the hosts in first half but got lucky.
Lautaro Martinez – 6: Did his bit, pressuring the opposing defense, but couldn’t contribute as much as he should have. Going through a very tough period currently.
Edin Dzeko – 5,5: As soon as the match kicked off he looked as though he couldn’t dribble and was struggling to run. Looking less and less fit to play every match.
Romelu Lukaku – 7: Replaced Edin Dzeko in the 63′ minute and had a great cameo. Continued his 100% penalty success rate for Inter, scoring his 19th out of 19.
Joaquin Correa – 6: Brought on in the 63′ for Lautaro Martinez and looked more lively than he has as of late. Created a chance and tried to be involved in play.
Robin Gosens – 6,5: Substituted on for Federico Dimarco in the 63′ minute and brought defensive solidarity. Made several wonderful tackles on the right flank.
Danilo D’Ambrosio – N/A: Entered in the 86′ minute for Denzel Dumfries and did not play enough to be able to be rated.
Stefan De Vrij – N/A: Came on in the 80+1′ minute for Alessandro Bastoni. Did not play enough to be able to be rated.
Simone Inzaghi – 7: Questionable decision to start Edin Dzeko over Romelu Lukaku, but game management was spot on and substitutions were absolutely perfect.
Michael Oliver – 7: Had a solid match in terms of decision-making. Many small fouls to call which were mostly called fairly, and got the major penalty decision correct.
Inter – 8: Nullified a solid Benfica team, handing them their first loss of this European campaign. Fantastic performance, giving themselves a good lead for the second leg.
Do you agree or disagree with Sempreinter.com’s Inter Milan player ratings? Who was your Inter Milan Man of the match? And who was the Nerazzurri’s worst performer on the day?