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Inter Milan made a flying start and took the lead with eight minutes to silence the AC Milan fans at the San SIro in what could be tagged a local derby in the Champions League.

In the first strike that made a difference, Hakan Calhanogu’s corner towards the far post had a perfect landing to the foot of Edin Dzeko who quickly landed a volley past Milan’s goalkeeper Mike Maignan.

Inter added another in three minutes for a 2-0 lead with Federico Dimarco’s low cross left by Lautaro Martinez and former Chelsea star Henrikh Mkhitaryan didn’t waste the opportunity to fire in.

Ac Milan slightly pressured to regain confidence but it was obvious Portuguese international Rafael Leao that was missing from the side due to injury. Sincerely, he would have made a difference in relieving pressure from the Milan defense.

Inter sought a third which rattled the post and Maignan saved Mkhitaryan’s follow-up. The first half ended with Inter having an upper hand in possession.

On resumption of the second half, the early effort from Hakan Calhanoglu saw him smash a shot off the post and Dzeko wasted a great chance in the half, although they look favourites to reach the semi-final of Europe’s top club competition for the first time since they won 13 years ago.

Milan’s late effort, if replicated in the second leg could turn things around, obviously if Rafael Leao is back from injury, some pundits say. Although, Sandro Tonali’s shot did clip outside of the post for the hosts and Tommaso Pogeba sent an effort at Cameroon international and Inter goalkeeper Andre Onana late in the second half, an indication that Milan has plenty of work to do in Tuesday’s second leg.

Meanwhile, Dzeko feels the whole team was really motivated, saying it’s not every day you play a derby in the Champions League semifinal. Dzeko who has been criticised for his low scoring form sometimes was different for the team in the game. ‘’Today I worked for the team and that was what was needed in such a big match.’’

Milan eliminated Inter in semi and quarter finals in 2003 and 2005 which going into the second on Tuesday will be explosive.

The winners of the tie will face holders Real Madrid or Manchester City in the June 10 showpiece in Istanbul. The first leg of the semi- final between Madrid against City finished 1-1 in Santiago Bernabeu in Spain on Tuesday.

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