Riding the slim momentum of Saturday’s late 1-0 win over a tricky Torino, Inter Milan will be looking to raise their spirits even higher by showing a response to last week’s loss in the Champions League when they face Viktoria Plzen in Plzen Tuesday. The Czech champions made the group from pot 4, so they are presumed to be the weakest, but the way Inter has struggled with the supposed “bottom” teams will serve as a warning not to take them lightly.
Viktoria Plzen are an opponent Inter has never faced competitively in their history, though they have faced the likes of Juventus, Milan, Roma, and Napoli in European competition in the past. This is their first season in the Champions League since 2018-19, the season they defeated Roma at home on the final group stage matchday.
The Czechs lost 5-1 in their first group stage match at the Camp Nou to Barcelona, but cannot be underestimated by Inter. In past seasons, the Nerazzurri have found it hard to take care of teams such as PSV, Salvia Praha, and Shakhtar Donetsk. The hosts will no doubt be looking for the shock result at home.
A 89th-minute winner from Marcelo Brozovic, assisted by Nicolo Barella, showed that Inter can still grind out results when they are not at their best. Samir Handanovic responded to the message sent by being rested against Bayern by making some solid saves while his backline bent but did not break. The Nerazzurri have set a foundation for a solid run of form, whether or not they are able to capitalize on the opportunity is yet to be seen.
The only absence for the match will be Romelu Lukaku, who is still targeting the other end of the international break for a return. However, Simone Inzaghi will have some decisions to make regarding squad rotation, just as he did last week.
Predicted Starting XIs
INTER (3-5-2): Onana; D’Ambrosio, Skriniar, Bastoni; Dumfries, Barella, Brozovic, Mhkitaryan, Gosens; Lautaro, Dzeko.
VIKTORIA PLZEN (4-2-3-1): Stanek; Jemelka, Pernica, Hejda, Havel; Bucha, Kalvach; Masquera, Vlkanova, Sykora; Chory.
Prediction: Plzen 1-3 Inter
We’ve seen this script before. Inter will give up a goal to their opponent, but they’ll fight to get back into the match, scoring two to take the lead and then a third once the Plzen resolve is broken. Look out for Edin Dzeko and an in-form Lautaro Martinez to be on the scoresheet. If results elsewhere go Inter’s way, they could be in second place on goal difference come the end of the night. Make no mistake about it, three points here are essential.