The best and worst of Zlatan Ibrahimovic was on show on Tuesday as he scored and later was sent off in Milan’s 2-1 defeat at Internazionale in the Coppa Italia quarter-finals.
Ibrahimovic clashed with his former teammate Romelu Lukaku at the end of the first half, and he was ejected for a second booking in the 58th minute. Lukaku converted a penalty for the equaliser and Christian Eriksen scored the winner deep in stoppage time.
Milan started the brighter and almost immediately went in front when Rafael Leão fired just past the left post. They did take the lead in the 31st minute when Ibrahimovic controlled the ball on the edge of the area before placing an angled drive between the legs of the Inter defender Aleksandar Kolarov. It went in off the base of the far post.
There was a huge argument between Ibrahimovic and Lukaku on the stroke of half-time and both were booked. The spat between the former Manchester United teammates continued after the half-time whistle and a visibly furious Lukaku had to be pulled back.
That was to prove costly for Ibrahimovic as he was shown a second yellow card after the break for a tackle on Kolarov and was sent off, leaving his side with 10 men.
Inter were level 13 minutes later. Leão brought down Nicolò Barella and, after viewing the incident again on the pitchside monitor, the referee pointed to the spot. Lukaku slammed the penalty into the top left corner.
The match had a lengthy delay as the referee Paolo Valeri received treatment for a thigh injury and was eventually replaced by the fourth official.
The Milan goalkeeper Ciprian Ttruanu pulled off a number of saves but it wasn’t enough. Just as the match appeared to be heading into extra time, Eriksen curled a free-kick into the top left corner in the seventh minute of stoppage time.
In the semi-finals Inter will play Juventus or Spal, who meet on Wednesday.