Inzaghi confirms his big-match pedigree

<img border='0' align='left' title=' ' src='' class='caption'> Filippo Inzaghi said before the Champions League final that he wanted to climb up to the Parthenon with the cup.

Updated: May 27, 2007 14:03 IST
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Athens, Greece:

Filippo Inzaghi said before the Champions League final that he wanted to climb up to the Parthenon with the cup.

It will be hard to stop him now.

Inzaghi scored two goals in AC Milan's 2-1 win over Liverpool on Wednesday, deflecting in Andrea Pirlo's free kick in the 45th minute and finishing off a play set up by Kaka in the 82nd.

"These are the evenings that remain with you for all your life," Inzaghi said.

But scoring goals in important matches is nothing new for the Italy striker.

"I've scored quite a few times in Europe, but scoring in the Champions League final is something special," Inzaghi added. "The first goal opened up the game but the second was certainly more beautiful."

Inzaghi also put the finishing touch on Milan's 2-0 win over Bayern Munich in the quarterfinals, and his two goals against Red Star Belgrade in August qualified Milan for the Champions League.

Inzaghi now has 38 goals in 66 Champions League games and 58 in all European matches, tying him with Real Madrid's Raul Gonzalez for third place on the all-time UEFA list. Only Gerd Mueller (62) and Andriy Shevchenko (59) have scored more.

Inzaghi exited to a standing ovation when he was replaced by Alberto Gilardino in the 88th.

Milan owner Silvio Berlusconi had suggested that the more muscular Gilardino start ahead of Inzaghi, but coach Carlo Ancelotti stuck with his instincts and kept Inzaghi in the lineup.

Scoring touch

His skills may be fading at 33, but Gilardino has managed only two goals in 18 career Champions League matches.

"Inzaghi has always done well as a starter," Ancelotti said.

Inzaghi was relegated to the tribune for Milan's shootout loss to Liverpool in the 2005 final, as he battled through a three-year stretch where he underwent two operations on his left ankle.

Inzaghi also played a minimal role in Italy's World Cup victory last year. He played in only one match - coming on to score a late goal in the first round against the Czech Republic.

"It's something you're born with," Inzaghi said recently of his scoring touch. "You can only fine tune it."

Inzaghi is also the only member of Milan's squad that is single.

"Soccer is my life," he said.

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