Simone Inzaghi admits Inter leave the Champions League with ‘regrets’ after beating Liverpool at Anfield, but he does not wish he’d substituted Alexis Sanchez before the red card. ‘Absolutely not.’
The Nerazzurri knew it was a mountain to climb after losing the first leg 2-0 and just as Lautaro Martinez had scored a spectacular strike from the edge of the box into the far top corner, a minute later Alexis Sanchez was sent off.
Down to 10 men, completing the comeback proved too difficult, especially as they rode their luck with Liverpool hitting the woodwork three times.
“There are certainly great regrets, as we wanted to reach this Round of 16 with all our strength, we were up against Liverpool, who along with Manchester City and Bayern Munich are the best team in Europe right now, and we fought them on an even keel,” Inzaghi told Sky Sport Italia.
“We are probably paying the price for the final 15 minutes of the first leg, because I think we had two very good games against an excellent opponent.”
“I think the first 75 minutes saw us deserve far more, then we conceded on a corner, which wasn’t even a good one, and the second goal really knocked us down.
“We came to Anfield to give our best and we emerge fortified from this meeting with a top team. During our best period of the game and the worst for them, Alexis Sanchez was sent off, that was bad timing.”
Inzaghi famously substitutes players who are on a yellow card, but opted to keep Alexis Sanchez on even after he risked a straight red for the first booking on Thiago Alcantara. Does he regret not making the change earlier?
“Absolutely not, because in that moment I needed Sanchez on the pitch and was not going to change him on a night like this.”
“I had a few fitness issues as well as being down to 10 men. Hakan Calhanoglu was tired, Dzeko will be very important in Turin, so I had to make other calculations. I wasn’t trying to protect the 1-0, I was trying to keep it in the balance to the end so we could snatch it with a set play.
“The regret is Sanchez, because Liverpool really were shaken by Lautaro’s goal and I wanted to see what happened after that.”
— Football on BT Sport (@btsportfootball) March 8, 2022