Shakhtar Donetsk 0-0 Inter Milan: Inter held to a stalemate | UCL 2021-22

Lautaro Martinez of Inter Milan against Sampdria
Lautaro Martinez of Inter Milan against Sampdria

Inter Milan have been held to a goalless draw by home side Shakhtar Donetsk in their second group stage game of the Champions League this season.

After their defeat to Real Madrid at home, Inter have now dropped points for the second straight game in the UCL.

Nicolo Barella hit the woodwork from long range in the first half while Edin Dzeko also misfired his shot from close range.

However, Shakhtar enjoyed more possession and forced Inter to defend in their own half.

The Nerazzurri came to life in the dying minutes after the second half substitute Joaquin Correa curled in a dangerous shot but Shakhtar goalkeeper Andriy Piytaov denied it with a super save. The 37-year-old followed up with an even more brilliant save to deny Stefan De Vrig’s header from the corner.

Both sides are yet to open their account in the Champions League this season after picking up defeats on the opening matchday. However, Roberto De Zerbi’s Shakhtar would be happier after successfully holding off the Serie A champions.

Inter’s hoodoo in the Champions League continues

Inter were eliminated from the Champions League group stage last season – they also failed to qualify for the Europa League – despite being a top team in Serie A under Antonio Conte. The expectations to change their fortunes in the European competition have increased since lifting the Scudetto last season. However, they still look like a fish out of water in Europe’s biggest competition although they have enjoyed a great start to their title defence in Serie A this season – 4 wins and 2 draws in 6 games.

Milan Skriniar with a solid performance in defence

Inter’s attack was dormant for larger parts of the game since they had to spend more time off the ball. Although Nerazzurri’s defence was collectively good, Milan Skriniar stood out with a terrific display. The Slovakian centre-back proved to be a nuisance for Shakhtar forwards and if it weren’t for him, the Ukrainian giants would have had a great chance to see off the Italian champions. Skriniar made a vital block at the start of the second half to deny Pedrinho’s opportunity.