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Europa League Preview: Inter vs. Qarabag

The Nerazzurri look to stay atop Group F with a victory over the Azerbaijan champions…

Maurizio Lagana

Inter is hoping to bounce back from a humiliating 4-1 loss to Cagliari when it welcomes Qarabag to San Siro on Thursday.

The Sardinians scored early and often as the Nerazzurri were run off the pitch in one of the worst defeats of the Walter Mazzarri era at the club.

However, the defiant manager vowed that his men would answer the bell this time around.

"It will be a different game for sure," he said, according to the club's official website. "We'll try to go about things differently, we'll fight, harry and chase more.

"We have to make it clear straight away that Sunday was just a bump on the road for a team that is still finding its way."

Inter has won all three of its Europa League matches, outscoring its opponents 10-0 in the process.

The Nerazzurri sit atop Group F thanks to their 1-0 win over Dnipro and should stay there with no disrespect to the Azerbaijan side intended.

The Beneamata shouldn't break too much of a sweat on Thursday, but then again that's what we thought on Sunday…

THE VITALS

Date: Thursday, October 2

Time: 3:05 pm ET

Venue: Giuseppe Meazza

BATTLE DOSSIER

Inter Probable Formation: 3-5-2: Handanovic; Andreolli, Vidic, Juan Jesus; D'Ambrosio, Hernanes, M'Vila, Guarin, Obi; Palacio, Osvaldo

Qarabag Probable Formation: 4-2-3-1: Sehic; Medvedev, Guseynov, Sadygov, Agolli; Garayev, Richard Almeida; George, Chumbinho, Muarem; Reynaldo

Unavailable For Duty: Mateo Kovacic will miss Thursday's festivities but Mazzarri hopes to have him fit for the weekend while Dodo and Jonathan are also sidelined.

Operation Rabid Dog: The objective is to shake off the effects of last weekend's humbling defeat and rebound with a morale-boosting display on our home turf.

Fear Factor: 2: Qarabag is as scary as going back to the bar and grill where you got your ass kicked the prior weekend to pick up a BLT to go at lunchtime.

Enemy Of The State: A rare reduplicant, who is not a trained Kennedy assassin, Muarem Muarem fired Qarabag into the group stages of the Europa League. The 25-year-old is one of the visitors' most dangerous players and the Inter back line must track his whereabouts at all times.

Medal Of Honour: Pablo Dani Osvaldo can't stop scoring at the moment and should likely find the back of the net once again on Thursday. I had my misgivings about the mercurial striker, but he has been value for money so far this season.

Likely Outcome: Inter should rebound with a comfortable win. If not it's in big trouble, but all should be well come Friday morning.