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 Posted by ESPN Staff
May 11, 2006

Internazionale 3-1 Roma: Cup success for Inter

MILAN, May 11 (Coppa Italia) - Internazionale lifted the Coppa Italia for the second year running with a 3-1 win over Roma at the San Siro to complete a 4-2 aggregate win for the Nerazzuri.

The home side took the lead through Esteban Cambiasso after just six minutes.

Julio Cruz doubled Inter's advantage in first-half injury time and Obafemi Martins completed the win in the 76th minute.

Italy striker Francesco Totti managed 35 minutes on his return after three months on the sidelines, but he was unable to alter the outcome of the game, although he did provide the cross for Shabani Nonda to score a consolation for Roma nine minutes from time.

Inter's fifth Coppa Italia success was rarely in doubt, though, and means Roberto Mancini's side end the season on a positive note with a piece of silverware.

Inter made a flying start, as they did in the capital a fortnight ago, with an early goal.

Cambiasso found the back of the net with a stunning left-footed volley from the edge of the area for a goal made in Argentina, Javier Zanetti providing the cross from the right.

Roma goalkeeper Alexander Doni had no chance as the ball flew sweetly off the former Real Madrid midfielder's boot into the corner of his goal.

Luciano Spalletti looked unmoved on the sideline and his calm demeanour rubbed off on his side, who slowly began to work their way back into the game.

Spalletti would have been hoping to take his team in at half-time to regroup just one goal down, but a late rally ensured Inter doubled their lead before the break.

In first half stoppage time, Cruz did manage to find the back of the net after excellent work from Dejan Stankovic.

The Serbia & Montenegro midfielder danced his way through the midfield before allowing Cruz to take over just inside the Roma half and bear down on Doni and score.

It took Spalletti just nine minutes after the break before he took a gamble and introduced Totti for his first appearance since February 19.

His first attempt at goal almost gave Roma a route back into the game.

Fifteen minutes into his return, he pulled a shot from 18 yards just inches wide of the far post, a shot which was probably the closest Roma had come to scoring all night.

But any hopes they had of staging a remarkable comeback were dashed when Martins scored the home side's third.

The Nigerian striker was put through a little wide of goal, but he found Cruz with a cross.

While Cruz went to ground claiming a penalty as he couldn't quite control the ball and Martins stepped in to take the ball off the feet of his team mate and fire into the back of the net.

Roma grabbed a consolation goal five minutes later when Nonda headed in from Totti's free-kick, but Inter's victory was never in doubt as Mancini's side lifted the Coppa Italia for the second successive season.

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