Inter were 1-0 down at San Siro, but Mauro Icardi’s stunning volley and a Matias Vecino header turned it around in seven minutes to beat Tottenham Hotspur.
The Nerazzurri won the Treble in 2010, yet their last participation in the Champions League group phase was back in 2011, so it was the debut in this tournament for Mauro Icardi and Samir Handanovic. Lautaro Martinez and Sime Vrsaljko were injured, Danilo D’Ambrosio not 100 per cent fit, with Dalbert, Roberto Gagliardini and Joao Mario not on the UEFA list due to FFP limitations. Dele Alli, Hugo Lloris and Moussa Sissoko were out of action, while Kieran Trippier and Toby Alderweireld were surprisingly left behind due to technical decisions.
Handanovic beat away a long-range Christian Eriksen free kick and Michel Vorm flew to prevent Davinson Sanchez’s diving header turning into an own goal.
Radja Nainggolan harassed Jan Vertonghen into giving away possession at the by-line and as the move continued, Marcelo Brozovic drilled wide.
Handanovic was decisive when Harry Kane controlled a smart Eriksen ball over the top, forcing the England striker wide so he couldn’t finish one-on-one.
Matteo Politano was unfortunate straight after the restart, his curler deflected off Vertonghen, but no corner awarded.
Instead, Tottenham broke the deadlock with a very flukey goal. Handanovic beat away Eriksen’s snapshot, but it came back out to the Dane and his second attempt took a massive deflection off Joao Miranda, looping over the goalkeeper and under the bar.
Erik Lamela’s curler was also deflected, this time just wide, and Vorm smothered a Perisic header, then Son was flagged offside after Handanovic’s save on a four against three move.
Handanovic also denied Lamela from close range after Lucas Moura surged down the left, but Luciano Spalletti surprisingly replaced Perisic with Antonio Candreva down the left.
Inter got their equaliser with debutant Icardi in spectacular fashion. Asamoah’s cross found Maurito outside the box and he watched it come down, swinging the boot for a magnificent volley into the near bottom corner.
Suddenly, the momentum of the entire game had changed and Spurs were desperately defending with bodies in the box. After a series of corners and efforts charged down, it was Matias Vecino who confirmed his status as the last-gasp hero. It was his goal against Lazio that completed the comeback to secure fourth place last season and this time he redirected from a six yards a Stefan de Vrij looping header on yet another corner.
Inter 2-1 Tottenham
Eriksen 53 (T), Icardi 85 (I), Vecino 92 (I)
Inter: Handanovic; Skriniar, De Vrij, Miranda, Asamoah; Brozovic, Vecino; Politano (Keita 72), Nainggolan (Borja Valero 88), Perisic (Candreva 63); Icardi
Tottenham: Vorm; Aurier, Sanchez, Vertonghen, Davies; Dembele, Dier, Eriksen; Lamela (Winks 72); Son (Lucas Moura 63), Kane (Rose 89)
Ref: Turpin (FRA)