Inter fell 2-1 in regulation time to Atlético Madrid and went on to lose the Champions League round of 16 tie after a 3-2 penalty shoot-out at the Estadio Cívitas Metropolitano in Madrid on Wednesday evening.

All the stats were against Simone Inzaghi’s side leading up to the second leg match, despite having a 1-0 advantage thanks to a goal from Marko Arnautović in the first leg at the Stadio Giuseppe Meazza. With a poor away record this season, it was extremely apparent that the Metropolitano Stadium was a fortress for Atléti and has been for many years. Today, the Atlético Madrid fans showed up and acted as the 12th man for the entire 120 minutes plus penalties.

Atlético Madrid lined up as follows (5-3-2):  Oblak; Molina, Savić, Witsel, Hermoso, Samuel Lino; Llorente, De Paul, Koke; Morata, Griezmann.

Inter lined up as follows (3-5-2): Sommer; Pavard, de Vrij, Bastoni; Dumfries, Barella, Çalhanoğlu, Mkhitaryan, Dimarco; Thuram, Lautaro Martínez.

The opening minutes were all Atlético. The hosts were constantly pressing Inter and doing so very well. The first chance came in the fifth minute, when Samuel Lino dribbled down the left side, beating two Inter players in the process. He was in the box and struck, but Yann Sommer got down quickly to stop the ball from finding the far bottom corner.

In the 13th minute, Hakan Çalhanoğlu collected the ball in his own half and sprayed a pass out wide to send Denzel Dumfries on the counter. The Dutch defender got into the box and had a shot, but was blocked by Jan Oblak. The rebound fell again to Dumfries but his second shot was also saved by the goalkeeper, who was able to properly collect that time around.

Sometime later, in the 28th minute, Atlético Madrid’s Hermoso whipped a cross into the box and was met by a towering Álvaro Morata. His header was on target but Yann Sommer was able to react quickly and deny the hosts from taking the lead.

In the 33rd minute, Alessandro Bastoni found Nicolò Barella on the left wing. The Italian midfielder dribbled to the byline in the Atlético Madrid box and picked out Federico Dimarco, who had opened space on the left and snuck into the middle of the box. Dimarco poked home and gave Inter the lead- and more importantly, a 2-0 aggregate advantage!

Less than two minutes later, Stefan de Vrij was unable to properly clear the ball and it fell to Atlético Madrid’s Koke on the edge of the Inter box. The midfielder played a chipped ball into Antoine Griezmann, which was completely missed by Benjamin Pavard, and the French forward was able to finish. Inter’s lead was immediately taken away and the Nerazzurri were back to just a one-goal lead on aggregate.

Towards the end of the first half, in minute 43, Antoine Griezmann was on the attack again, dancing in the Inter box. His slot made it through a sea of black and blue shirts, but Benjamin Pavard was able to cut it out to prevent another goal.

Inter was completely nullified and was looking considerably tired and bleak for the first little bit of the second half. With a series of chances from Atlético and several important saves from Yann Sommer, Inter was still in it.

In the 76th minute, Lautaro Martínez picked up the ball and put Marcus Thuram through on goal. The French forward was unable to keep his shot down as his effort sailed over the net. A massive squandered opportunity to put the tie to bed.

Five minutes later, it was Lautaro again who was creating chances for Inter. The 2022 FIFA World Cup Champion threaded a ball through to Nicolò Barella in the exact same sequence as the previous chance, but Barella’s shot was directly at Jan Oblak. Two major chances within five minutes for Inter who could have been in a very different position.

In the 87th minute, Koke picked out Memphis Depay, unmarked in Inter’s box, with a smooth reverse pass. The Dutch forward slotted home, beating Yann Sommer and levelled the aggregate score. Extra time was looking inevitable.

During the opening minutes of the first half of extra time, substitute Yann Bisseck sent a lovely ball into the back post of the Atlético Madrid box to find Marcus Thuram. The French international was completely unmarked and had a free header, but was unable to hit the target. Another major chance missed.

There were minor chances in the second half of extra time but nothing dangerous enough to really test either goalkeeper. Penalties were coming up.

Hakan Çalhanoğlu stepped up first after Lautaro Martínez won the coin flip and chose for his side to shoot first. The Turkish playmaker slotted his penalty with ease, as we have seen many times already this season. 0-1 to Inter on penalties.

Memphis Depay stepped up and smashed a powerful shot into the top left of the net. 1-1 on penalties.

Next, it was Alexis Sánchez’s turn to shoot. The veteran forward hit his shot to the left but was a comfortable height for Jan Oblak to save. The penalty score remained 1-1.

For Atlético, Saúl stepped up. The Spaniard went low and to the left, but was saved by Yann Sommer! A massive boost for Inter as the score remained 1-1 still.

Then, Inter substitute Davy Klaassen walked to the spot to take his penalty. The Dutch midfielder again went to the left but was denied by Jan Oblak. 1-1 penalty score after five shots.

The young Rodrigo Riquelme stepped up and sent Yann Sommer the wrong way, placing his penalty in the bottom left corner. Atlético was now ahead 2-1 on penalties.

Francesco Acerbi, who looked quite nervous walking to the spot, prepared for his shot. The veteran defender dispelled the nervousness and hit a no-nonsense penalty into the middle of the goal. Inter levelled the penalty score to 2-2.

Ángel Correa stepped up for Atlético Madrid and hit a nearly unstoppable shot, going off the crossbar and into the top left corner. Atlético Madrid was now ahead 3-2.

Finally, it was the Inter captain, Lautaro Martínez to take the final penalty for the visitors. The Argentine fumbled with the ball as he carried it to the spot. Backing up, running forward and smashing the ball completely over the bar, Inter were eliminated from the 2023-2024 UEFA Champions League.

Following a formidable display, here is how we have rated the performances of the Inter players.

Player Ratings

Yann Sommer – 7.5

By far Inter’s best performer on the night, made incredible saves to keep the Nerazzurri alive in the match and even saved a penalty in the final shoot-out.

Benjamin Pavard – 5

Made more mistakes in one match than we have seen from him all season. Completely misread Koke’s pass to Griezmann on Atlético Madrid’s first goal.

Stefan de Vrij – 5.5

Did well during the first half, but fell apart from the second onwards. Lost his man, which led to Atlético Madrid’s second goal.

Alessandro Bastoni – 6

Solid in defence and contributed to Inter’s goal, found Barella who found Dimarco and scored.

Denzel Dumfries – 5

Did well defensively but was extremely poor offensively. Had several chances in the first half with lots of space, but always made the wrong decision. Lost the ball on too many occasions due to poor touches, as well.

Nicolò Barella – 6

Started the game poorly but found his way into it. Gave a nice assist to Federico Dimarco, but squandered a massive chance towards the end of the second half that would have won Inter the tie.

Hakan Çalhanoğlu – 6.5

Inter’s hardest-working midfielder. Was running like he had fresh lungs until the very last second of extra time.

Henrikh Mkhitaryan  – 5

Lost far too many balls and made far too many wayward passes. Looked absolutely gassed by the time he was taken off. Could use a rest in the coming matches.

Federico Dimarco – 7

Scored an important goal and was effective up and down the left-hand side.

Marcus Thuram – 5

Did not find his way into the match. Constantly lost the ball, was unable to make anything of it and squandered two or three massive chances that could have put the tie to bed.

Lautaro Martínez (C) – 6.5

Despite missing the final penalty, Inter’s captain was exceptional in his hold-up play and created two major chances in the final minutes of the match.


Francesco Acerbi – 6

Entered the match and provided his usual strong defensive presence. Scored a great penalty during the shoot-out.

Matteo Darmian – 6

Made a decisive block to stop a goal, and ended up playing as a left wing-back for most of extra time.

Davide Frattesi –  5.5

Came in and did his best to create opportunities against tired legs.

Yann Bisseck – 6.5

One of the few substitutes who entered and made a difference. Used his physicality well and offered more going forward, as well as defensively.

Alexis Sánchez – 6.5

Another substitute who did particularly well. Created chances throughout extra time, showing passion and a winning mentality.

Davy Klaassen – 4.5

Was brought on for the penalty shoot-out, missed his penalty.