The Nerazzurri have not had the best of luck in Genoa, losing their last five outings – failing to score in four of those meetings.
Following the loss to Lazio, the team continued its descent into disarray after manager Luciano Spalletti called out Mauro Icardi for not playing in the match. However, he walked those comments back in his pre-match news conference.
“I had to say something to defend the team,” Spalletti said. “He’s worked perfectly. Our sporting department know that too. He wasn’t called up and he paid what he had to pay, from our point of view.”
Inter Milan news (L-W-W-L-D)
Well, it’s official … Mauro Icardi has been called up for the match against Genoa.
After sitting out the better part of the last two months, the former captain has been deemed eligible to play by manager Luciano Spalletti.
“The table has tightened and results are needed. This is the first one we face and we must do well in it,” Spalletti said. “The team have trained well. We must fight physically before we can in a technical sense. Mauro has been called up.”
Spalletti used his news conference to suggest that he and the team are attempting to work past the issues surrounding the club over the last few months.
“(Inter CEO Beppe) Marotta’s work was decisive in letting the parties come together in a real way. It was a coming-together that has now put Mauro in a position to help the team,” Spalletti said. “If mediation is born to dictate conditions, it becomes more complicated. In the context of our team, Mauro’s worth more than Messi and Ronaldo put together.”
Spalletti said Icardi missed the match against Lazio because he “took a bludgeoning from his teammates” which likely sounds way worse that what it was.
Additionally, midfielder Radja Nainggolan is likely to start after playing the second half against Lazio.
The Nerazzurri will, however, still be without defender Stefan de Vrij and forward Lautaro Martinez, who suffered an injury during the international break.
Inter find themselves in a need-to-win situation, sitting just two points ahead of Milan in third. Only eight points separate third-place Inter from ninth-place Torino as teams gear up for the last push of the season seeking Champions League qualification.
Probable lineup: Handanovic; D’Ambrosio, Miranda, Skriniar, Asamoah; Gagliardini, Brozovic; Politano, Nainggolan, Perisic; Icardi.
Genoa news (L-W-L-D-D)
Genoa sit 11th in the Serie A following a 2-0 loss at Udinese over the weekend.
However, to their credit, they are the first, and so far only, team to beat Juventus when they defeated the Old Lady 2-0 in Genoa just prior to the international break.
But Genoa is anything but consistent.
Despite holding Juventus scoreless, their defense has given up 44 goals this season, leading to a goal differential of -11. Their offense has managed just 34 goals in 29 matches.
That offense is led by forward Christian Kouame’s four goals this season – of course that is only because Genoa parted ways with Krzysztof Piatek in January. Antonio Sanabria and former Inter midfielder/forward Goran Pandev each have three goals.
Taking away Piatek’s goals for Genoa and the squad has just 21 this season.
For Wednesday’s match, they will be without captain and defender Domenico Criscito who has been suspended. That leaves the door open for Giuseppe Pezzella to start.
Probable lineup: Radu; Pereira, Romero, Zukanovic, Pezella; Lerager, Rolon, Radovanovic, Lazovic; Sanabria, Kouame.
Time and Date: 3 p.m. EDT Wednesday, April 3, 2019
Location: Stadio Comunale Luigi Farraris (Genoa)
How to watch: In the United States, the match can be seen on ESPNNEWS and ESPN3. If you are in Italy, the match can be watched on DAZN. beIN Sports will have the match in the Middle East.
Click here to see how you can watch the match anywhere in the world.
What do you think? Post your comments below!