Inter Milan is riding a wave of momentum on the pitch coming out of last week’s fixtures. The Nerazzurri face Rapid Wien in the second leg of their round of 32 clash as they look to advance to the round of 16 of the Europa League.
The 1st leg was a physical match for the two clubs, they kept the referee busy throughout as each team amassed 4 yellow cards. Despite the chippy nature of the match, Inter was able to largely control the ball and dictate the tempo throughout the match. They controlled possession, dictated tempo with their passing and had more opportunities in the final third.
A 39th minute penalty converted by Lautaro Martinez proved to be the decisive goal to give Inter the 1-0 victory in Vienna.
Inter Milan team news
The Nerazzurri had a memorable week on and off the pitch last week. Off the pitch, turmoil with Icardi seemed to hit a tipping point with the Argentinian talisman being stripped of the captaincy.
Rumors continued to swirl around his status in the locker room and future with the club. With rumors regarding a possible Icardi/Dybala swap, Wanda speaking out on the Tiki Taka TV Show and Icardi’s own social media it was a week full of drama off the pitch.
On the pitch, Luciano Spalletti has seemed to get the buy in of his players as the scoring drought has come to an end and the results have begun to pick up.
Despite missing the likes of Icardi, Brozovic and Skriniar, the Nerazzurri were able to pick up a 1-0 result in Vienna in the 1st leg of their Europa League round of 32 tie with Rapid Wien.
They followed that up on the weekend with a 2-1 victory over Sampdoria with Mauro Icardi watching from the stands.
It was a wide open match with both teams getting plenty of opportunities on goal. Finishing in the final third continues to be an issue but the effort the squad showed to see out a tough win will undoubtedly give them confidence.
Inter will once again be without Icardi for this match, Sime Vrsalkjo is out with a long term injury. Keita Balde continues to recover and will not be in the side. Dalbert, Gagliardini and Joao Mario will all be out as they are not part of the UEFA squad.
Projected lineup: Handanovic; Cedric, de Vrij, Miranda, Asamoah; Vecino, Valero, Nainggolan; Politano, Perisic; Martinez.
Rapid Wien team news
Rapid Wien returned to action on Sunday in the Austrian Cup. They had a dominant performance picking up a 5-2 victory over fellow Austrian Bundesliga side Hartberg.
Rapid Wien was a much different squad on Sunday, making six changes to the side. They elected to have a more attacking strategy in their domestic cup tie.
Their only goal scorer who also played in the Inter match during the week was defender Maximilian Hofmann who scored the team’s third goal of the match.
The second leg is do or die for Rapid Wien as they travel to Giuseppe Meazza. With that in mind, it seems likely that the Austrian side will go for it to stay alive in Europa League.
Inter should not be surprised to see them implement a similar attacking strategy and formation that they implemented over the weekend.
Projected lineup: Strebinger; Potzmann, Sonnleitner, Hofmann, Bolingoli; Schwab, Martic; Murg, Knasmullner, Schobesberger; Pavlovic
Time and Date: 3 p.m. EST (8 p.m. local) Thursday, Feb. 21, 2019
Location: Giuseppe Meazza (Milan)
How to watch: In the United States, the match will be shown on Galavision and Bleacher Report Live. If you are watching in the United Kingdom, the match will be streamed on BT Sport Extra. In Italy, you can watch the match on Sky Calcio 2, Sky Go Italia and Sky Sport Uno.
Click here to see how you can watch the match from anywhere in the world.
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