After playing 120 minutes in a cup tie that looked more straightforward than it panned out to be, Inter will host Venezia in a match that is still slated to go on at this point despite a COVID outbreak in the Venezia organization. It is still unclear whether the match will be played or not, but given the way Serie A has treated the situation, the show will try to go on.
Inter’s B team saw Empoli bring the match to them on Wednesday in the Coppa Italia, where it took the inclusion of a number of usual starters to help put away Serie A’s surprise package this season. Nonetheless, some key pieces still got a full rest or did not register substantial minutes. This should mean that Inter come into this match with a fresher team than the one they fielded last weekend against Atalanta after Simone Inzaghi fielded his first team in the Supercoppa Italiana midweek last week.
The only big miss will be Joaquin Correa, who pulled up with a hamstring injury just minutes into the match against Empoli. Inter fielded a rotated team against Venezia in Venice back in November and managed to get the win, but the Serie B promotion winners have since strengthened with a few January signings including veteran Portuguese winger Nani.
Venezia were dumped out of the Coppa Italia last week by Inter’s Serie A opponents Atalanta last Wednesday, and then played out a 1-1 draw in the league against Inter’s most recent cup opponents Empoli. When the two teams faced each other last, Venezia looked rudderless and very likely relegation candidates. Since then, they have begun to find their feet, climbing out of the relegation zone by two points over Cagliari. If they win their match in hand, they could make their gap between themselves and the bottom three more comfortable.
At the moment, Venezia have 15 confirmed COVID cases in their ranks. Among those cases are eight players and manager Paolo Zanetti. If Venezia get up to nine players out or if local health authorities bar their trip to Milan, the match will not be played and the decision will then get complicated, much like Inter’s recent canceled match against Bologna, which the Nerazzurri could still possibly get points awarded from.
1-1 (A) - 27/1/2002
0-2 (A) - 27/11/2021
Predicted Starting XIs
Prediction: Inter 2-0 Venezia
With Venezia in COVID troubles, on top of traveling to San Siro, this match will not be easy for them. Inter should be able to cruise in this one much like they did a couple of months ago in Venice. Keeping control of the match and getting the strikers back to scoring will be two big things to look for in this match. If Inter can have both happen, they will be in business.