I am going to keep this as short as possible in order to give up the stage for tomorrow’s preview and game build up comments.
The bottom line is that we won a game we should have won and that we had to win. As of this game, we have completed 1/3 of the season and I think it’s now time to start looking at the table.
More after the break
We kept possession, we transitioned from offence to defence and vice-versa well and we kept the ball in their half of the field as much as possible.
We were able to rotate a little bit as needed: namely Eto’o and Sneijder got more rest than would have been possible had Deki and Mario not been as reliable as they have been this season as a whole.
The attack was able to create chances to score and with a little more luck/skill it could have been 4-1 at the half. But Mario doesn’t work as well with Eto’o and Milito as they work with each other. They have a very good understanding with each other. He also blew a hell of a chance one on one with Viviano. As did Milito.
The midfield was able to shut down most of the penetration that Bologna tried to make in a counter as they ran the famed 8-1-1 formation at us. This led to Bologna just booting the ball up to the lone attacker and hoping that Lucio and Samuel fall asleep and lose the guy who is consistently scoring on us every single season… sigh. They also contributed to the attack, as was evidenced by Deki’s mind blowing miss and Cambiasso’s further mind blowing inability to finish that miss.
The defence, usually a strength in our game, was disappointing. Maicon’s crosses were, to quote a phrase, “poopy”. His runs forward weren’t really inspiring, nor were other actions of his. Lucio and Samuel’s collective brain fart notwithstanding, they at least made up for their actions later.
All in all, this looked like a typical return to League action for us; slow start and gradual warming up of the engines.
Mario needs to play well with others on the team. I don’t really care if he makes stupid fouls against players on other teams, because I can’t name a player who hasn’t – including previous players for Inter. But, last season he couldn’t play with Ibra without a shouting match breaking out. This season he just doesn’t seem to want to fit in with the other forwards either. He’s not the only one to have a poor game. Milito had his chances as well. That’s right. I said “chances” plural. He’s going to have to put those away.
The midfield was not creative enough. Without Sneijder we need someone to take over the engine of the attack. We have enough engines in the defence. Motta helps a little – he’s a better passer than Deki – but he gets sucked back or he gets sucked forward and is slow on the return. We need someone to distribute up top and they have to stay up there.
The defence needs to stay awake. Samuel has to realize someday that Lucio’s not marking anyone. Ever. His job isn’t to mark people. Lucio, if he was born 30 years earlier, would have been a natural sweeper. This is why he’s very good at sniffing out through passes into the danger area. This is also why he’s not a natural cover guy. Samuel, who is a classic Central Defender, needs to figure this out and cover for him.
All in all, the job was done. We kept possession. We threatened their goal several times. We scored, that’s pretty important. This was a bad team at the bottom of the table and we did what we should have to maintain a place in the top three.
Can you tell I’ve been on a Clint Eastwood western kick?
This is the ugly. We have 3 very tough games in less than 2 weeks. We take on Barcelona tomorrow, we take on Fiorentina just after Thanksgiving (for those in the States), and we take on Juventus the week after that. Depending on how this week goes, the importance of the game right after Juventus will determine how tough a game it will be since we take on the current and most recent Champions of Russia a few days after Juve.
It’s going to be a grueling schedule. If we draw everything – that’s right, the next 4 games - we will most likely be alright in all competitions. We will definitely be alright in Serie A. Chances are we would go through in the Champions League, as well.
Okay, enough of this silliness. I suggest that you take a look at the Barcelona Offsides and discover how we are a counter attacking team – despite owning possession in the vast majority of our games and how we are suddenly NOT going to use Javier Zanetti (you know, our captian?) in the game tomorrow. We might play counter attack against Barca, but then: 1. It's the best way to play them since they bring everyone forward and 2. I don't think that we figure to get enough time left to us during the game to attack much if we try to build normally.