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Serie A Preview: Inter vs Sassuolo

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Walter Mazzarri's men look to secure their first win of the young season when they welcome the Neroverdi to San Siro…

Valerio Pennicino

Inter continued where it left off last season by playing out a disappointing draw against Torino in the Serie A opener for both teams.

The Nerazzurri were lucky to leave the Stadio Olimpico with a point as Samir Handanovic was forced to save a first-half penalty to avert total disaster.

A number of Inter's summer signings made their league debuts with Nemanja Vidic suffering the ignominy of conceding a penalty and receiving his marching orders during his Beneamata bow.

There will be better days ahead for Vidic and Inter in general, most likely beginning on Sunday when they lock horns with Sassuolo.

The Nerazzurri manhandled the Serie A minnows twice last season and it should be more of the same this term, although I will be very surprised if we replicate the 7-0 drubbing.

Still, Inter should have no problems securing its first triumph of the new campaign and the impending victory could kickstart a nice little winning streak with Palermo, Atalanta and Cagliari on deck.

THE VITALS

DATE: Sunday, September 14

TIME: 9:00 AM ET

VENUE: Giuseppe Meazza

BATTLE DOSSIER

Inter Probable Formation: 3-5-2: Handanovic; Andreolli, Ranocchia, Juan Jesus; Nagatomo, Hernanes, Medel, Kovacic, Dodo; Palacio, Icardi

Sassuolo Probable Formation: 4-3-3: Consigli; Gazzola, Antei, Ariaudo, Peluso; Biondini, Magnanelli, Missiroli; Berardi, Zaza, Sansone

Unavailable For Duty: Nemanja Vidic is suspended after he was farcically sent off in the waning moments against Torino while Jonathan is thankfully out with a muscle problem.

Operation Rustic Wrecking Ball: The objective is to inflict a punishing blow on the Italian lightweights and pave the way for a string of victories for the autumn offensive.  

Enemy Of The State: Simone Zaza will need to be neutralized as the 23-year-old is enjoying a purple patch to start the season. The striker scored in the 1-1 draw with Cagliari on the opening day of the domestic campaign before finding the back of the net in Italy's 2-0 win over Norway in Euro qualifying. Andrea Ranocchia and company need to be on high alert whenever he has the ball.

Medal Of Honour: Rodrigo Palacio should be set to make his season debut on Sunday and if all goes to plan he'll have opened his scoring account as well.

Fear Factor: 1: Sassuolo is as frightening as the middling lower-level employee who is promoted one level higher than he/she should be and struggles to keep his/her head above water.

Likely Outcome: Anything less than three points here would be catastrophic. We should take care of business with considerable ease though especially at home. Inter runs out comfortable 2-0 winners.