Date: Tuesday, December 15, 2015
Time: 3:00 p.m. ET / 21:00 CET
Venue: Stadio Giuseppe Meazza; Milan, Italy
Cagliari currently sit second in the Serie B, but it's worth noting that the Rossoblu did knock off sixth-place Serie A side Sassuolo to get here. So let this serve as a warning to all the Nerazzurri who think this match will be a cakewalk: Cagliari are a scrappy side, and they're primed to break more hearts. (Also, let's not forget that Cagliari spanked Inter last season at the San Siro in a 4-1 win led by an Albin Ekdal hat trick.)
That said, if Inter play the way they *should* then they should be able to dispatch Cagliari fairly easily - especially considering that this is a home match for Inter. Mancini's side have really began to click this season. The club have won six of their last seven league matches, and they haven't conceded a single goal in any of those six wins.
As a further testament to the "gelling" of the squad, Inter midfielder Felipe Melo said of the team atmosphere:
We have a team that works hard and sticks together. We try to make sure we're always ready when the boss comes calling.
The only senior players that will be unavailable for Inter in this match are Inter defenders Nemanja Vidic and Davide Santon, out with a back and ankle injury, respectively.
Cagliari, on the other hand, will be missing Daniele Dessena - who suffered a broken leg earlier this season.
While keeping in mind that it's *just* the Coppa, I'm positive that Inter will desire to keep all the momentum they've built up over the last several matches and will be hungry to deliver an emphatic win and move on to the quarterfinals.
Watch the match on RAI Due (ITA).