|Mourinho's Inter tame Chelsea
Chelsea grabbed a vital away goal as former boss Jose Mourinho and his Inter Milan side came out on top in a pulsating Champions League first-leg at the San Siro.
Chelsea, whose defeat was compounded by the loss of goalkeeper Petr Cech with a calf injury in the second half, were a goal down inside three minutes when striker Diego Milito put Mourinho's side ahead.
Salomon Kalou equalised in the 51st minute but Inter restored their advantage four minutes later when Esteban Cambiasso drilled in the winner.
Kalou's goal may yet prove to be the pivotal moment of the tie when the two teams meet again in the return leg at Stamford Bridge next month.
A match that had been built-up as a contest between the two coaches - Blues boss Carlo Ancelotti, of course, was returning to his former home - was sparked into life inside three minutes.
Thiago Motta's through ball found Milito inside the Chelsea penalty area and, when captain John Terry half-heartedly attempted to block Milito's progress, the Inter striker slammed the ball beyond Cech at the near post. Mourinho greeted the goal with an approving nod from his seat in the Inter dugout.
In the 11th minute, Nicolas Anelka tried his luck with an angled drive but the France international could only find the side netting.
But, overall, Chelsea's response to their early setback had been promising and moments later Kalou brought a save from Julio Cesar with a speculative 25-yard drive.
Chelsea won a free-kick some 35 yards out when Dejan Stankovic fouled Ballack in the 15th minute and they were unlucky not to equalise as Drogba's fierce attempt on goal cannoned back off the crossbar with Cesar well beaten. Ballack then forced Cesar to punch clear with a swerving 18-yard drive.
In the 22nd minute, goal-scorer Milito was booked for diving after going down from an imaginary challenge by Ricardo Carvalho and Kalou followed him into the book seconds later after a foul on Wesley Sneijder.
The early goal had sparked Chelsea into life and the game was hardly the defensive lockout many had predicted. Apart from Milito's goal, Chelsea had looked untroubled in defence and had dominated possession.
John Obi Mikel sent a rising drive into the arms of Cesar in the 29th minute as Chelsea continued to press for a leveller.
But Inter spurned a gilt-edged chance to increase the lead in the 34th minute when Sneijder's cross found Eto'o unmarked on the edge of the six-yard box. Instead of planting the ball past Cech, Eto'o completely missed his kick.
Chelsea should have been awarded a penalty seconds before the interval when Kalou went down under a challenge from Walter Samuel, but their penalty claims were denied and referee Manuel Gonzalez was surrounded by Chelsea players at the half-time whistle.
In the 51st minute, though, Chelsea were level through Kalou. Branislav Ivanovic created the opportunity when he ran unchallenged to the edge of the Inter penalty area.
The Chelsea right-back looked to have over-run the ball but somehow managed to turn it into the path of Kalou, who curled it in from the edge of the box. Kalou and the rest of the Chelsea squad then ran to the dugout in a clear show of support for coach Ancelotti.
It took Inter just four minutes to re-establish their lead. Ivanovic blocked Esteban Cambiasso's first attempt but there was little anyone could do about the follow-up shot, which flashed into the bottom corner beyond Cech from 18 yards.
It got worse for Chelsea on the hour when goalkeeper Cech damaged his knee after rolling the ball out and had to be stretchered off. There was nobody around the Czech Republic international when the incident occurred.
He was replaced by Hilario, but it was another blow to the Blues, who were struggling to get back into the game for a second time.
Chelsea should have levelled in the 64th minute when Lampard collected a cross from Anelka but saw his eight-yard shot saved by Cesar. Chelsea were virtually camped inside the Inter half in the last ten minutes but, with Kalou now replaced by Daniel Sturridge, they had little outlet on the left.
Mikel summed up a night of frustration for the Blues when he sent a 20-yard shot into the stands in the 88th minute.
Inter, having been outplayed all night, hung on to record a first-leg victory but the Mourinho bandwagon will roll into Stamford Bridge next month with double the intensity.
Lampard feels Chelsea deserved more
Frank Lampard believes Chelsea still have it all to play for but admitted their old boss Jose Mourinho set them a tough task after Inter's win.
"There's still the game in London to go. On the balance of play, possession, shots on target, I thought we were the stronger team, but we knew how Inter were going to play - they do like to soak up pressure and that's what they did," Lampard told ITV.
"(Mourinho's) very clever in the way he plays. They came to wait for us, we gave away the goal, came back, then let another in, but we've got the away goal and that gives us a chance."
Lampard admitted he did not see the incident as Kalou was seemingly fouled in the area by Samuel, but added: "Salou thinks it's a penalty and, if it is, it's a red card and the game's completely different, but you have to take it on the chin and in the home leg maybe something goes for us.
"We've got the away goal, but obviously we've got to beat them at home so it's in the balance."
Mourinho did not celebrate either Inter goal on the pitch, but insisted he was more than pleased with the result.
"Of course I'm happy inside," he said. "I was saying a few weeks ago or few months ago when we got the draw I'm a professional and I want to win as a professional I want to win more than anybody else."
He also denied he had done anything to outsmart his old players.
"I don't think the game was a question of tactics, I think the game was a real Champions League game, a really high-level game.
"There were no surprises for me, no surprises from Chelsea, just two teams playing with the quality they have.
"Chelsea can play better, Inter can play better, but this is the reality of the Champions League. Sometimes it's difficult to express your qualities. This is a knock-out so you know any mistake can cost you qualification.
"Inter were unlucky with the draw, Chelsea were unlucky with the draw, because I think if you look at the Champions League, this was the game with two teams with great ambitions, and one of them has to go home."