Goals from Edin Dzeko and Denzel Dumfries earned Inter a comfortable 2-0 win over a ten-man Viktoria Plzen on Tuesday evening.
Dzeko opened the scoring in the first half, before Dumfries doubled the advantage after Pavel Bucha was sent off for a reckless challenge on Nicolo Barella.
After wholly dominating the opening exchanges Inter deservedly opened the scoring in the 20th minute through Edin Dzeko. The veteran striker coolly side-footed the ball into the bottom corner from the left-hand side of the penalty after Joaquin Correa found him with a clever pass.
The remainder of the first half proved to be very comfortable for the visitors who, without trying too hard, were able to control proceedings. Partly this was due to Inter’s superiority in midfield, and partly because Viktoria Plzen simply didn’t have the quality on the ball to create anything in the final third.
Dzeko was denied his second goal of the evening near the end of the half by some solid goalkeeping from Jindrich Stanek, who got down well to block his drilled effort from the right of the penalty area.
Stanek was again called into action right at the start of the second half, being forced into a fantastic save by Dzeko, who headed an Alessandro Bastoni free kick goalward.
Inter really turned up the heat thereafter, pushing forward in search of a game-killing second goal. They should have got it in the 51st minute when Bastoni looped the ball into the six-yard box to Denzel Dumfries. His resulting free header on goal however, ballooned over the crossbar.
Any slim hopes of a Plzen comeback were dashed on the hour mark when Pavel Bucha received a straight red card following a VAR review. The 24-year-old lunged horribly into a 50-50 with Nicolo Barella, catching the Italian international high on the shin.
In the 70th minute the visitors finally doubled their lead. The goal came from Dumfries who, after being played through on goal by Dzeko, fired the ball past Stanek and into the back of the net.
The win is an important one for Inter in Group C, with a double-header against Barcelona coming up in the near future.