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Posted on 30 July 2006  - 12:00

Teemu Tainio was the central figure as Inter Milan were defeated by a 2-1 scoreline at the Lane on Sunday afternoon.

Teemu Tainio was the central figure as Inter Milan were defeated by a 2-1 scoreline at the Lane on Sunday afternoon.

Although he was credited with the first goal, the Dubious Goals Panel would have doubtless swung into action had this been a competitive fixture as his shot appeared to be heading wide before taking a big deflection to wrong-foot Francesco Toldo in the Inter goal.

Teemu made sure he was the headline maker in the fixture in the closing stages when he strode almost the length of the pitch to net the winner after the Italian champions had levelled before the break.

Martin was forced into one significant change from the side that took on Stevenage in midweek, with Calum Davenport starting the game in place of the absent Ledley King. Both managers opted to to delay the first team entry of most of the World Cup players, in Inter's case this meant no Luis Figo, Esteban Cambiasso, Marco Materazi, Adriano, Fabio Grosso or Julio Cruz.

The first real opening came on ten minutes when a Robbie Keane cross was nodded wide by Tom Huddlestone, while a similar superb centre moments later just cleared the heads of his strike partners.

An eye-catching spin in the area from Dimitar Berbatov came very close to giving the Bulgarian a clear sight of goal on towards the midway point in the half, his final effort being deflected wide before Keane stung the fingertips of Toldo with a vicious drive from an acute angle to the right of the penalty area.

It took a fine save from Radek Cerny to prevent Inter taking the lead on 23 minutes when a measured cross from Dejan Skankovic was met by the head of Obafemi Martins. The Nigerian steered his header towards the inside of Cerny's left hand upright, but the goalkeeper was equal to the challenge of diverting wide.

Keane then tested Toldo with a dipping volley from all of 25 yards after Berbatov cushioned a header back in his direction, but failed to really extend the keeper from a free-kick just outside the box shortly after.

The deadlock was broken on 36 minutes - albeit in a somewhat fortunate fashion - when Tainio tried his luck from outside the area. The Finn dragged his shot and it was clearly heading wide before striking the foot of Daniele Marino and rolling past the stranded Toldo.

Seven minutes later though Inter were level. Douglas Maicon tried his luck with a powerful low drive that Cerny did excellently to block down to his right hand post, but he could not hang on to the ball and Martins was on hand to fire back across the Czech and into the net.

Marton Fulop made his entrance at half-time in place of Cerny, giving the young Hungarian his first outing at the Lane.

The game struggled to pick up any momentum in the first 15 minutes of the second period and neither goalkeeper was called into action as the contest became a little scrappy. Davenport did well to latch onto a Keane set piece and his header nearly caused some alarm to Toldo before flying narrowly wide.

Hossam Ghaly was another to take to the White Hart Lane pitch for the first time just after the hour mark, with Huddlestone being withdrawn. Tainio was then re-located to right full-back, allowing Routledge to pose a threat further forward.

Martins attempted to enliven the encounter with a dipping and swirling strike from 30-odd yards with 20 minutes remaining that sailed wide before a further change saw Reto Ziegler come on for Jermain Defoe.

Tainio well and truly bought the afternoon to life on 79 minutes when, after winning a tackle deep in his own territory, he burst forward from full-back and kept going before delivering a precision left foot finish into Toldo's bottom right hand corner.

The winning pre-season run continues...