Barcelona out of Champions League after Inter win


Inter Milan secured their place in the Champions League knockout stage and sent Barcelona into the Europa League with a 4-0 victory against Viktoria Plzen.

Substitute Romelu Lukaku marked his return from injury with a late goal as Inter comfortably secured the win they needed to reach the last 16.

Edin Dzeko scored twice after Henrikh Mkhitaryan’s opener.

Inter’s final opponents Bayern Munich will secure top spot in Group C if they beat Barcelona later on Wednesday.

Barcelona are guaranteed to finish third and compete in Europe’s second-tier competition for the second successive season.

Simone Inzaghi’s Inter, who kept their fate in their own hands with a 3-3 draw at Barcelona a fortnight ago, are two points behind Bayern after taking 10 points from five games.

With Inzaghi serving a touchline ban, Federico Dimarco was denied at close range by Plzen goalkeeper Jindrich Stanek as Inter dominated from the start at the San Siro.

Midfielder Mkhitaryan headed in Alessandro Bastoni’s cross from the left as Inter broke the deadlock with their 10th attempt after 35 minutes.

Dzeko slotted in from Dimarco’s pass to double the lead over the Czech champions before the interval.

Mkhitaryan struck the post 10 minutes into the second half, but Dzeko’s second from a Lautaro Martinez assist put the result beyond doubt.

Lukaku added a fourth within four minutes of coming off the bench in his first appearance since August because of a hamstring injury. (BBC Sport)

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