Inter vs. Lille: Nerazzuri Grind out a Victory

Nate KahnContributor IIIOctober 19, 2011

LILLE, FRANCE - OCTOBER 18:  Thiago Motta of LOSC Lille Metropole battles with Julio Cesar of FC Internazionale Milano during the UEFA Champions League, group B match between LOSC Lille Metropole and FC Internazionale Milano  at Stade Lille-Metropole on October 18, 2011 in Lille, France.  (Photo by Jamie McDonald/Getty Images)
Jamie McDonald/Getty Images

Inter Milan were far from stellar against Lille on Tuesday, but given their form of late they will be happy to get a result no matter how it comes.

The only goal of the match came after 21 minutes, when Wesley Sneijder cut the ball back nicely to Giampolo Pazzini. Pazzini took it very well, as he volleyed a thunderous shot past the keeper, Vincent Enyeama.

The only other real chance that Inter had was when Dejan Stankovic fired a ball from the top of the box that was tipped over by Enyeama.

For much of the match, Inter put large numbers behind the ball and were content to absorb the pressure. Inter defended well throughout the match and recorded their first clean sheet away from home in the Champions League in seven matches.

The French double winners pressed forward after the Inter goal, but were unable to create many clear-cut chances. Their best chance to equalize came when substitute Dimitri Payet tried to curl one in, but was denied by a good save from Cesar. Another opportunity came when Florent Balmont received the ball deep into the penalty area, but his shot was blocked by Lucio.

Lille will be very disappointed from this match, as they had a golden opportunity to beat Inter, who were in horrible form going into the match. They now sit on the bottom of the group with just two points.

Inter are still far from where they need to be after this victory, but they now sit on top of the group with six points. They also have two home games coming up in the Champions League, so the prospects look good for the Nerazzuri to advance. Inter will now set their sights on a home match against Chievo, as they look to start heading up the Serie A table.