Loss number 15 rears its ugly head as Inter lose at home to Lazio 1-3. Games like this are really frustrating during a normal season. During a year like this it’s just another day in the life. There were open goal misses, an upright dinged and of course the penalty debacle. By and large I thought that the team played well, if a little disjointed. The disease that has plagued the team these 9 months has been that the midfield hasn’t been able to support the defense. That disease hasn’t been cured and the team paid for it on those expeditions that Lazio made into the Inter half.
Going forward I thought that Inter made a lot of hay. They were able to work the ball into the penalty area and create chances. Pereira was able, it seemed, to be able to get to the endline and cross at will. Alvarez and Guarin missed at least one chance each that probably would have been in the net if either were a forward named Cassano, Palacio or Milito. Guarin stung the hands of Marchetti once or twice. Cambiasso forces a desperate save that just hits the post in it’s journey not to go in.The penalty miss… well the less said the better, I suppose. I don’t think it would have been so bad except that Pazzini did the exact same thing last year, right? Well that and Alvarez draws the ire of the crowd at home games. He is one of those players that supporters would be happier somewhere else. There seems to be a lot of those around lately.
The defense in the first half seemed unsupported as large gaps were visible between them and the midfield. On the first goal, the ball came into the area from the wide left,. That player received the ball and worked the ball down to cross without much resistance. Further, there seemed to be 2 defenders on Floccari in the box with decent position, but it looked like Juan was called off the ball, because it looked like he tried to avoid heading the ball clear, from an onrushing Handanovic. Despite the ability of Lazio to bring the ball down the field without contest, with 2 defenders in the area, Handanovic had no business calling for that ball. Most likely, he saw the ball coming in and didn’t have a whole lot of confidence of someone being there in place. The second goal is something that sticks in my craw. Floccari pushes Ranocchia with extended arm at the top of the area, which is up to the referee to call or not. Ranocchia rushes to catch up and clips Floccari for the whistle. The thing I hate about referees is that there never seems to be consistency. Don’t call Floccari? Fine, but it’s not fair calling the result of foul you just let through. The penalty call itself was correct, though. And unlike Alvarez, the penalty kick was dead on and well placed. The third goal is another example of the midfielders not helping out on D. Set up at 25 meters, a clear look at the goalmouth and no one closing down makes it 3. And if Onazi didn’t shoot it wouldn’t have made a difference – with no one closing him down he had all day to make a pass.
On the other side, Alvarez looked like the ball or the defender hit him on the nose when he went up for Pereira’s cross. Guarin was proving to be a real threat with all the quality shots he was taking. Taking those quality shots made Cana nervous and when Guarin pushed the ball to the right he leapt in desperate. All in all it wasn’t the train wreck I was expecting and bad luck played its part. Having said that, good teams never seem to succumb to strings of unfortunate incidents, rather they tend to play well enough in all phases and levels to keep bad luck from being deadly.