Score: Inter 1 Roma 1
San Siro, Milan, Italy
After the winter break Serie A action would resume as third place Inter would welcome visitors fifth place Roma. Both teams have been struggling as of late with both teams struggling to win. So both of these teams would look to get back into winning form. Coming in visitors Roma would come off a loss to Atalanta who currently now sit eighth in the league standings while the home side would come off a draw vs Fiorentina. The last time Inter would face Roma was back at Stadio Olimpico where Inter would defeat the then home side 3-1 but the victory would come with controversy and bad officiating. Both teams play with somewhat similar tactics like possession style football and both teams are great at creating scoring chances despite both teams struggling to find the net as of late. Also both sides are currently struggling from keeping their opponents from creating chances which as been both side kryptonite. Basically this is a even based matchup despite Inter winning majority of their last six matchup against Roma. In the first half both teams would come out and create multiple scoring chances though Inter would dominate the possession game and scoring chances. Late in the first half Roma would get on the board when El Shaarawy would put a goal into the left corner of the goal putting them up 1-0. The first half would end Roma up 1-0 on the home side. In the second half Inter and Roma would continue opening chances while Roma would look to add to their lead while the home boys would look to get back on even terms. Inter would do just that as Vecino would find the back of the net late in the second half putting them back on even terms. With a short amount of time left one of these teams would look to get the much needed three points but each team would hold each other to a point a piece with the score at the end being 1-1. Roma would still be in fifth position while Inter would drop into fourth.
This week Inter week Inter would make some player switches along with positional as well while sticking with the 4-3-2-1 formation. In goal would be second in clean sheets Handanovic. On defensive would be right back Santon who has been starting in the last four matches for Inter. On right center be Milan Skriner who would replace Ranocchia from the week before Skriner played a key to Inter’s success earlier in the season where they would go on a sixteen match unbeaten streak. Next to him on left center is Miranda who has a total of 81 appearances for the home side. Capping them off on right back Cancelo who has six appearances. On defensive mid field swapping sides would be Gagliardini and Vecino who now has a total of two goals this season with the second coming in today’s matchup. On the attacking side of things would be secondary goal scorer of Inter right winger Ivan Perisic who has seven goals for the season while teammate Icardi holds more with eighteen. On center mid would be Valero and on left center would be Candreva. Up top the Inter scoring beast striker Icardi who is rumored to be linked with a potential transfer at the end of the season to Real Madrid. This looks like a solid lineup but they need to keep a eye on Roma”s defense who are good at keeping their opponents at bay while they strip the ball away from the offense and use that to create chances of their own. They need to keep an eye on Dzeko and Nainggolan who are great at taking scoring chances along with Strootman. Roma are just as hungry as Inter is and they will do anything to get those three points as well. The best Inter can hope for in this match is a draw.
After the players would take the pitch this match would get under way. This match would get off to a fast start as Roma would look to draw first blood against the home side near the ten minute mark Shaarawy would take a right footed shot from the right of the box goes over the crossbar. Shortly after Inter would take a chance of their own when Perisic takes a right footed shot from the left of the box is saved in the lower left corner of the goal. At the fifteen minute mark Candreva would look to put Inter on the board with a right footed shot from outside the box misses high and to the right. Shortly after Perisic would take a header from the center of the box from a close range but misses to the left. So far Inter would be dominating the possession and shot game and keeping up the pressure on Roma’s offense. Minutes later Roma’s Strootman takes a header from the left side of the box misses high and to the left assisted Kolarov with a cross following a corner kick.Near the thirty minute mark Perisic would create again another chance with a right footed shot from the left of the box is saved in the center of the goal. A minute later Pellegrini takes a right footed shot from outside the box is close but misses to the left. A minute later in the thirty first minute the stalemate would be broken as Shaarawy takes a right footed shot from the right of the box to the center of the goal. This would put Roma up 1-0 with fourteen minutes left to play in the half. After the goal Inter would look to equalize when Icardi takes a right footed shot from the center of the box misses to the right. With ten minutes to play Fazio would look to add to Roma’s lead with a header from a long range missing to the left. Their wouldn’t be much action after that as the half would end with Roma up 1-0. If Inter could create more chances and keep Roma’s chances limited by keeping defensive presure on them Inter can possibly get back in this matchup and come away with at least a point.
After the break this match would resume with Roma looking to add to their lead and Inter trying to get things equalized. Early in the second half Inter would make their first substitution of this match when Brozovic would come on to replace Gagliardini because of an injury. This half would start out slow until about the fifty five minute when Roma would look to add to their slim lead as Dzeko takes a header from the center of the box misses to the left after a cross from Pellegrini after a corner. So far Inter have dominated the possession game but could they capitalize on any goal chances? After the sixty minute mark Candreva would look to be the person to equalize things up for the home boys with a right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the center of the goal. Minutes later Icardi would take a header from the center of the box missing to the left after a cross from Candreva. With twenty minutes left to play Inter would bring on Eder to replace Candreva. A minute later Eder shortly after coming on the pitch would take a right footed shot from the right of the box is saved in the right corner of the goal. Two minutes later Icardi takes a left footed shot from the right side of the box is saved in the lower left corner. In the seventy seventh minute Inter makes their final subbing when Dalbert replaces Santon. Near the eighty fifth minute Cancelo takes a left footed shot from the right of the box misses to the right. Inter have stepped up in the chances game. In the eighty sixth minute Inter’s time would come as they would equalize as Vecino takes a header from the center of the box to the lower right corner after a cross from Brozovic. In the final minute Eder would look to add to the equalizer they just got with a right footed hot from outside the box misses to the right. This match would end with the score being 1-1. Both teams would split a point each.
This was a well deserved draw for Inter despite the point drop and position drop as well. They came out on fire and maintained the pace throughout. They lead in the possession and shots and any chance they got they took. They did a great job capitalizing on the equalizer. They still need to work on creating chances and capitalizing on them if they ever have any chance of winning matches again. With this draw now puts Inter in fourth in the league standings. The man of the match is Vecino who was solid from start to finish and who was the one to put Inter back on even terms. Next week Inter travel to Paolo Mazza to take on relegation favorites 18th place SPAL. The last time they faced off back in September Inter would defeat them 2-0 and they will look to do that to them again. This match should easily be all Inter but anything can happen. As always FORZA
Man Of the Match: Mathias Vecino
By the numbers
Pass Accuracy 85%
Pass Accuracy 85%
Top of the table
Napoli 17-3-1 54pts
Juventus 17-2-2 53pts
Lazio 13-4-3 43pts (One match in hand)
Inter 12-7-2 43pts
Roma 12-4-4 40pts (One match in hand)
Bottom of the table
Cagliari 6-2-13 20pts
Crotone 5-3-13 18pts
SPAL 3-7-11 16pts
Verona 3-4-14 13pts
Benevento 2-1-18 7pts