Round 6 sees Serie A hold its first midweek round, with Inter kicking off at home to Fiorentina.
This time last week there seemed to be a lot of concerns around the team following their narrow loss to Parma, but late victories against Tottenham (2-1 in the Champions League) and Sampdoria (1-0) sees renewed enthusiasm around the club. Indeed, the win in Genoa was particularly impressive as the squad reacted to a poor start and two disallowed goals to inflict the Blucerchiati’s first home loss of the season.
Fiorentina come into this match as one of the form sides in the competition, currently sitting in third place with a 3-1-1 record. La Viola also hold the best goal-difference in the league with eleven goals scored versus only three conceded. While their home form has been perfect, Stefano Pioli’s men have yet to record a win on the road, losing to Napoli and earning a draw against Sampdoria.
Team News – Inter
This will be Inter’s fourth match in 10 days, so we can expect Luciano Spalletti to make a few changes from the side which won at the weekend. Both Matteo Politano and Antonio Candreva were subbed off in that game with what looked like minor knocks, but the club did not release medical reports on either player so we can assume they will once again be available. The only major concern for the Nerazzurri will be Sime Vrsaljko who is still recovering from an injury whilst suffered on international duty with Croatia.
Both Ivan Perisic and Stefan De Vrij started on the bench against Samp, so I expect to see them return to the starting 11. Milan Skriniar could be due a break after playing every minute since his return in Round 2, and Spalletti has shown a willingness to rotate his wingers throughout the season. Another player who could be rested is Mauro Icardi who has featured for the entirety of the last two matches. However, this is more likely to occur against Cagliari this coming weekend.
With the exception of the back-three versus Torino, Spalletti has stuck with his seemingly preferred 4-2-3-1 formation this season. It is difficult to see him changing this on the back of two wins. Furthermore, with an easier match (on paper) coming up against Cagliari, it is likely we will see Spalletti put out his best eleven on Tuesday night.
GDS predicted line up: Handanovic; D’Ambrosio, De Vrij, Skrinari, Asamoah; Vecino, Brozovic; Candreva, Perisic, Nainggolan; Icardi
At the time of writing, Spalletti has been banned for this match after his dismissal against Samp. Inter have appealed the ban, however.
Team News – Fiorentina
Fiorentina will come into this match full of confidence after a comfortable victory against the previously high-flying SPAL. Piolo should have a full squad to choose from for the game, although former Inter player Cristiano Biraghi was substituted early with a potential ankle injury at the weekend.
With the exception of their match against Sampdoria, Pioli has set his team up in a 433 formation in every match this season. Their exciting trident of Giovanni Simeone, Federico Chiesa and Marko Pjaca have been in fine form so far and should start . In the midfield, we should see another Inter youth product Marco Benassi appear alongside Fernandes and Jordan Veretout. Finally, the Viola defense has been consistent all year, so expect to see Biraghi, German Pezzella Vitor Hugo, Nikola Milenkovic. Finally, French sensation Alban Lafont should appear between the sticks.
Much has been made of Fiorentina’s front three already this season, but their defence has (statistically) been their greatest attribute. They have conceded the fewest goals in the league overall, and have scored the (equal) second most goals. Don’t expect to see too much rotation, although this is the first time this season that Fiorentina will have a midweek game.
Inter can expect another tough opponent who will be looking to claim a big scalp on the road. Fiorentina appear to have fixed their defensive issues from last season so Inter will need be at their best to break through. The first half against Sampdoria was rather dire, but the second saw the team create enough good chances to win the game. They will be looking to produce more of the same against La Viola.
We should also be confident after our last two results, and I think a loud San Siro should be enough to get Inter over the line. I’m picking a 3-1 win for the Nerazzurri.
Date & Time: September 25, 2018, 8:30 p.m. CEST (2:30 p.m. on the U.S. East Coast)
Location: Stadio Guiseppe Meazza, Milan
TV/Streaming: If you live in the United States you can follow the game on ESPN+, while Italian viewers will find it on Sky Go Italia, DAZN Italy, or SportItalia.
For those in the UK, you can find the game on Eleven Sports 2 UK.
Click here to find out where you can watch the match in other countries around the world.
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