With wins over Barcelona and Sassuolo, Inter look resurgent. Moving the team back into a deeper lying position seems to have been just the tonic Inter needed to start rebuilding on this season. Another big test in this new resolve will come on Wednesday against Barcelona in Spain. Barcelona need no less than a win to keep their hopes of advancing to the knockout rounds of the Champions League alive, so Inter should have their hands quite full on Wednesday.
Barcelona head into this match still aggrieved by the late decision not to award a penalty on a ball that hit the hand of Denzel Dumfries a week ago at San Siro. Xavi, his players, and Blaugrana fans alike have aired their grievances consistently over the past seven days.
Like Inter, Barcelona are not in the greatest financial state and will be viewing advancement in the Champions League as a financial goal. Both teams will be looking to secure their spot in this match, as both will be facing group leaders Bayern Munich and bottom feeders Viktoria Plzen to finish out the group. Both Bayern and Plzen have all but cemented their spots at the top and bottom of the group respectively, so all is to fight for between Barca and Inter. Interestingly, Barcelona have a crucial edition of El Clasico coming up on the weekend as they jockey for top position in La Liga. Something Xavi will have to have an eye on.
No Inter fan excepted the club to be in this position even just a week ago. Victorious over Barcelona and bogey team Sassuolo in consecutive matches with a chance to all but reserve a spot in the knockouts of the Champions League.
Simone Inzaghi seems to have found the right combinations to make this Inter team resolute at the back while still scoring goals. The Nerazzurri need just a draw to win the head to head over Barcelona and will be looking to grab this golden opportunity to show their European pedigree to the rest of this competition’s field.
1-2 (H) - 10/12/2019
1-0 (H) 4/10/2022
Predicted Starting XIs
INTER (3-5-1-1): Onana; Skriniar, de Vrij, Bastoni; Darmian, Barella, Calhanoglu, Gagliardini, Dimarco; Mhkitaryan; Lautaro.
BARCELONA (4-3-3): Ter Stegen; Roberto, Pique, Christensen, Alonso; Gavi, Busquets, Pedri; Raphinha, Lewandowski, Dembele.
Prediction: Barcelona 1-1 Inter
All Inter need is a draw. It sounds much easier in theory than in practice, especially in a full and furious Nou Camp. However, Inter look like they have found the setup that it will take to pull off such a herculean effort. Absorbing pressure and breaking on the counter. Having Henrikh Mhkitarian playing in the midfield behind Lautaro Martinez would give Inter a midfield majority over Barcelona’s three. This along with a deep block could be enough to frustrate Barcelona enough to escape with a result. If they do so, it will be a result that does wonders for the team, especially mentally.