11/7/2018 2:20:37 AM

Barcelona through to Champions League last 16 after Inter draw

Barcelona through to Champions League last 16 after Inter draw

Milan, Italy: Barcelona qualified for the knockout stage of the Champions League despite Mauro Icardi snatching a late 1-1 draw for Inter Milan at the San Siro on Tuesday.

Icardi struck in the 87th minute to grab the draw just four minutes after a neat curling strike from substitute Malcom gave Barca the lead.

Ernesto Valverde's side, who stay top of Group B with 10 points, three ahead of Inter and six away from third-placed Spurs, go through due to their strong head-to-head record with both rivals.

Barca were on the front foot from kick-off and Ousmane Dembele forced Inter keeper Samir Handanovic into the first of a series of fine saves with a sharp curling strike just a minute into the game.

That dominance continued throughout the first period as Barca had almost complete command of the ball and goalscoring chances, Inter's sole opportunity coming in the 19th minute when Kwadwo Asamoah flashed over Ivan Perisic's low cross.

Inter struggled to string passes together under the weight of Barca's pressing, and Handanovic had to be at his best to stop fine efforts from Luis Suarez and former Inter player Philippe Coutinho putting the away side ahead before the break.

The Slovenia international made his best save just before the hour mark when he charged out to block Ivan Rakitic's shot as the Croatian bore down on goal, but made a host of other saves that kept Inter in the game.

Icardi rewarded Handanovic for his outstanding display by grabbing the equaliser at the death, taking advantage of confusion in the Barca penalty area to spin and fire home a dramatic equaliser.

Elsewhere, Harry Kane kept alive Tottenham's bid to reach the knockout stages as the England striker's late double inspired a dramatic 2-1 win over PSV Eindhoven.

Mauricio Pochettino's side were only 12 minutes away from being eliminated as they struggled to recover from Luuk De Jong's opener for PSV after 61 seconds at Wembley.

But England captain Kane came to the rescue with a predatory equaliser before heading the crucial last-gasp winner with the aid of a deflection off PSV's Trent Sainsbury.

With two matches remaining, at home to Inter Milan on November 28 and away to Barcelona on December 11, Tottenham remain in third place in Group B.

But the north London club are now just three points behind second-placed Inter and have their fate back in their own hands.

In Group D, Porto are on the brink of qualification after a 4-1 win at home to Lokomotiv Moscow. They lead the section by two points from Schalke, who defeated Galatasaray 2-0 in Gelsenkirchen.

 

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