Inter wins, Gunners-Valencia tie

Updated: 25 February 2007 08:28 IST

Inter Milan took another big step towards the quarterfinal of the Champions League with a 3-2 beating of Bayer Leverkusen on Tuesday. Barcelona, the only team w

Inter wins, Gunners-Valencia tie

London:

Inter Milan took another big step towards the quarterfinal of the Champions League with a 3-2 beating of Bayer Leverkusen on Tuesday. Barcelona, the only team with a perfect record, was forced to stand still by the weather. Barca's game against Newcastle was postponed until Wednesday because heavy rain made its Camp Nou surface unplayable. After nine wins in a row, including two in the qualifying round, Louis van Gaal's team has to wait 24 hours to try and tie AC Milan's record of 10. In Tuesday's other games, four-time winner Ajax Amsterdam edged AS Roma 2-1 and Arsenal and Valencia tied 0-0 at Highbury. Luigi Di Biagio scored twice in the first half as Inter outplayed last season's runner up for most of the game at San Siro. Although Boris Zivkovic replied for the Germans, Inter got a third after Argentine striker Hernan Crespo caused an own-goal for Inter 10 minutes from time. Francoaldo Franca netted a last minute second for Leverkusen. The result means that Hector Cuper's team, having overwhelmed Newcastle 4-1 at St. James Park two weeks ago, has a maximum six points from two games as the teams go into the mid-winter break. They return Feb. 18. Barcelona would like to have been up there too but torrential rain forced the postponement of its Group A game against Newcastle at Camp Nou until Wednesday. Belgian referee Frank de Bleeckere made the decision to call off the second-rotation Group A match after rain on Tuesday afternoon worsened the already difficult conditions. In Group B, Swedish international striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic and experienced Finnish forward Jari Litmanen put Ajax in charge in Amsterdam against Roma whose only consolation was an 89th minute reply by Gabriel Batistuta. At Highbury, backup goalkeeper Andres Palop defied Arsenal with four top quality saves from Thierry Henry, Fredrik Ljungberg, Robert Pires and Dennis Bergkamp in a meeting of the English and Spanish champions. Palop is standing in for one of the world's top goalkeepers, Santiago Canizares, who is sidelined through injury. When he was finally beaten, Carlos Marchena was on hand to clear off the line from Sylvain Wiltord as Arsenal, beaten 2-0 by Manchester United in the Premier League on Saturday, failed to score for the second game in a row. Tuesday's results mean that Arsenal and Ajax are tied on four points, with Valencia, runner up in 2000 and 2001, in third and Roma last with none. (AP)

Topics : Football
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