German mid-tablers Werder Bremen have earned a consolation spot in the UEFA Cup after downing Inter Milan 2-1 in its final group stage Champions League match at the Weserstadion in Bremen.
Bremen's Germany Under-21 midfielder Mesut Oezil was the difference
The German club's goals on Tuesday, Dec. 9, came from Peruvian and ex-Chelsea striker Claudio Pizarro, who netted in the 63rd minute, and his Swedish partner up front, Markus Rosenberg, who scored with nine minutes left on the clock to put the match beyond doubt.
Swede Zlatan Ibrahimovic scored for the Italian Serie A table-toppers with two minutes remaining of regulation time to make the score line more respectable for the Nerazzurri.
Inter coach Jose Mourinho didn't shed any tears over the loss, instead shifting the post-match focus to his team's upcoming Champions League knock-out-round clash next year.
"I am disappointed, but you had one side playing life or death football and the other who were just playing for a result," he said. "I left a few names out of the team which was an indication of what we were trying to do here and so you have to accept the result.
Frings yellow, Bremen avoid bottom
Inter coach Mourinho isn't as upset with the result as he looks
Germany midfielder Torsten Frings earned himself a yellow card inside the first 30 minutes of the match for bringing down Inter striker Ricardo Quaresma. The Bundesliga stalwart must now miss Bremen's next European game.
Bremen narrowly avoided finishing last in Group B -- which also featured Panathinaikos, who finished first, and Anorthosis -- after managing only one win and four draws in their six Champions League encounters.
The top two teams after the Champions League group stage proceed to the next knock-out round, which begins in February, while the third-placed team drops into the UEFA Cup. The last-placed team from each of the eight groups drops out of both competitions.
Around the grounds
AS Roma beat Bordeaux to top Group A
In the night's other Group B match, Panathinaikos defeated Cypriot First Division club Anorthosis 1-0 thanks to Greece international Giorgos Karagounis's 69th-minute goal.
In other Champions League clashes, Chelsea downed CFR Cluj 2-1 at Stamford Bridge after goals from Kalou and Drogba, while AS Roma got the better of Bordeaux after Brighi and Totti both earned second-half goals.
Sporting defeated Basel 1-0 in Switzerland, while Ukrainian club Shakhtar downed Barcelona 3-2 at the Camp Nou.
Liverpool beat PSV 3-1 in Eindhoven while Marseille and Atletico drew 0-0 in Marseille.