Ibrahimovic the difference for Inter

September 1, 2007

ROME, Sept 1 (Reuters) - Zlatan Ibrahimovic scored twice to help Inter Milan return to form with a 2-0 Serie A win at Empoli on Saturday.

The Swedish striker flicked home at the far post on 13 minutes after Maicon's deep cross from the right and then finished off a counter-attack seven minutes from time.

The champions lost the Italian Super Cup to AS Roma and then drew 1-1 at home to Udinese in their league opener last weekend when goalkeeper Julio Cesar was dismissed and Ivan Cordoba scored a stoppage time own goal.

Their stuttering start continued with a 5-0 drubbing by Barcelona in a friendly on Wednesday but they got back on track against Empoli despite Cesar's suspension and Patrick Vieira missing out through injury.

Small Tuscan side Empoli, drawn against FC Zurich on Friday in their first ever UEFA Cup campaign, showed glimpses of why they were Italy's surprise package last season but stand-in keeper Francesco Toldo ably dealt with their efforts.

Brazilian striker Adriano, who decided to stay at Inter despite several loan offers and a lack of first team action, was not included in Roberto Mancini's squad.

Juventus visit Cagliari and Roma host Siena on Sunday with AC Milan, who beat Sevilla in Friday's European Super Cup, entertaining Fiorentina in Serie A on Monday.