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Shy 'Prince' Milito crowned King of Inter

Last updated on: May 23, 2010 17:32 IST

'It's a joy I've never experienced'



Inter Milan's shy striker Diego Milito finally hit the global headlines on Saturday with two superb goals to clinch the European Cup having previously gone about his business almost unnoticed in the wider world.

Nicknamed "the Prince" in Italy, the Argentine was will now be acclaimed as the King after showing his customary calmness with strikes either side of the break to down Bayern Munich 2-0 in Madrid's Santiago Bernabeu stadium.

A late bloomer, the 30-year-old could justifiably claim to have personally sealed Inter's unprecedented Italian treble this season having scored the winner in the Italian Cup final earlier this month and last weekend's scudetto-clinching match at Siena.

However, such is Milito's bashfulness, he did no such thing.

"It's a joy I've never experienced. Incredible. I am so happy for Inter because we wanted this so badly," he told reporters after carrying his toddler around with the Champions League trophy in front of delirious fans.

Image: Diego Milito celebrates after scoring


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"We are so happy and it's a unique sensation," he said before surprisingly being coy about whether he will stay at Inter next season.

The Argentine, a scorer of four goals in 21 caps, was named in Diego Maradona's World Cup squad for the first time to little fanfare but will now be the talk of South Africa after helping Inter to their third European Cup, their first since 1965.

He only joined Inter at the start of the season from mid-table Serie A club Genoa, where he spent two prolific spells having also banged in the goals for Real Zaragoza in Spain.

Image: Diego Milito

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'We deserved it'

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Filling Zlatan Ibrahimovic's shoes at Inter after the Swede left for Barcelona was never going to be easy, but Milito has outshone strike partner Samuel Eto'o all season with his coolness, fox-in-the box attributes and amazing eye for goal.

A return of 22 goals in Serie A this term as Inter sealed a fifth successive title was a remarkable feat having had his heels kicked to pieces by opposition defenders, who knew of his danger even if the rest of the world did not.

"I have always battled, trying to give my utmost, to learn, even if I am 30. I'm so happy, we deserved it," Milito added.

Image: Diego Milito with the Champions League trophy

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A proud mother

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Brothers Diego and Gabriel Milito played for arch-rivals Racing Club and Independiente respectively in the Buenos Aires suburb of Avellaneda.

Gabriel, a centre back now with Barcelona and 15 months younger, showed international promise earlier than Diego, who is now finally eclipsing his brother.

When they played in Argentina Gabriel fouled Diego during an Avellaneda derby and Diego went looking for a fight with his brother.

Their mother was asked later who she sided with and she said she had always consoled the one on the losing side from the time they were juniors.

On Saturday she was surely hailing Diego.

Image: Gabriel Milito and Diego Milito

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