Inter Milan will be keen to make it consecutive wins in Serie A when they welcome Salernitana to the Giuseppe Meazza on Sunday.

Inter Milan put up a spirited performance against Barcelona in the UEFA Champions League earlier this week and can count themselves unlucky to have come away without a win. Simone Inzaghi will be pleased with what he saw at Camp Nou and will hope that the same intensity translates to the Serie A fixture between Inter Milan and Salernitana.

Inter have lost four of their opening nine games and are currently eight points off early Scudetto trailblazers, SSC Napoli.Β The Nerazzurri come into the clash hoping to make it two wins in a row in Serie A. Inzaghi’s men have failed to win two Serie A clashes in a row since the opening two weeks of the 2022/23 campaign.

With home support to boot, the Coppa Italia holders will go into the game as favourites. Curiously Salernitana have lost fewer games than Inter this season and could draw to within two points of their illustrious opponents should they pull off the unthinkable at the Giuseppe Meazza.

Salernitana pulled off the impossible by staving off relegation last season. By picking up ten points in their opening nine games, they have given themselves a solid platform to build on. A win on Sunday will see them pick up back to back victories in Serie A for the first time since April. And with Inter there for the taking, it remains to be seen if they will push their luck.

The Hard Tackle looks at how both sides could line up for the game and what tactics they might employ.

Team News & Tactics

Inter Milan

Inter Milan will be without first eleven stalwarts Marcelo Brozovic and Romelu Lukaku, both of whom are still injured. Joaquin Correa is likely to return for the game but could have to settle for a spot on the bench.

Simone Inzaghi’s men showed fight and were largely clinical at Camp Nou this week. However, Inter Milan were also unable to drive home their advantage in what is becoming a regular trend this season. The Inter boss will also have to account for fatigue given the competitive nature of the clash against Barcelona.

The Nerazzurri will stick to their trademark 3-5-2 formation but are likely to make a few changes to keep things fresh. Andre Onana has held his spot for the last few weeks and is likely to keep Samir Handanovic out once again to start in goal.

The Cameroonian shot-stopper will start behind a back three of Milan Skriniar, Stefan de Vrij and Alessandro Bastoni. Denzel Dumfries and Robin Gosens will start as the wing-backs and will hope to provide the attacking impetus down the flanks.

Kristjan Asllani should start in Brozovic’s stead and will be accompanied by Hakan Calhanoglu and Nicolo Barella in central midfield. Lautaro Martinez has an impressive record against Salernitana and also found the back of the net against Barcelona. He will accompany Edin Dzeko in the front two.

Probable Lineup (3-5-2): Onana; Skriniar, de Vrij, Bastoni; Dumfries, Barella, Asllani, Calhanoglu, Gosens; Dzeko, Martinez

Salernitana

Davide Nicola’s men have enjoyed a decent start to the campaign and have lost just thrice in the opening nine games. Another win this weekend will take them to within two points of Inter in the Serie A standings.

Salernitana have, however, won just twice and have drawn their remaining four games. The dogged nature helped them stave off relegation last season and they could once again dig in their heels at the Giuseppe Meazza.

Nicola will be without the injured trio of Giulio Maggiore, Matteo Lovato and Ivan Radovanovic. They are likely to deploy in a 3-5-2 formation and will display much energy on Sunday. Luigi Sepe will start in goal behind a back three of Norbert Gyomber, Flavius Daniliuc, and Inter Milan loanee Lorenzo Pirola.

Pasquale Mazzocchi and Antonio Candreva will start on the flanks and will be responsible for pegging back Denzel Dumfries and Robin Gosens, respectively. Doing so should take the fizz out of the Inter attack.

Grigoris Kastanos will look to take advantage of Kristjan Asllani’s inexperience and should start at the tip of the Salernitana midfield. He will be accompanied by Lassana Coulibaly and Tonny Vilhena in the middle of the park.

Krzysztof Piatek and Boulaye Dia will start upfront. The latter is in good form and scored the stoppage time winner last weekend against Hellas Verona. He will hope that lightning will strike twice, this time at Inter Milan.

Probable Lineup (3-5-2): Sepe; Gyomber, Daniliuc, Pirola; Candreva, Coulibaly, Kastanos, Vilhena, Mazzocchi; Piatek, Dia

Key Stats

  • Inter Milan and Salernitana have not drawn their six Serie A games. The Nerazzurri have won four times, with Salernitana coming out on top twice.
  • Inter Milan defeated Salernitana 5-0 in both of their games last season. It was the first time since 1999 that a club has won consecutive Serie A games against the same opposition by four or more goals.
  • Inter Milan are yet to draw their last 18 Serie A games. This is the Nerazzurri’s longest such run since the 1950s.
  • Salernitana are winless in their last six away games in Serie A, losing five of them.
  • Inter Milan have conceded ten goals in the second half of Serie A games this season. It is the worst record of any team in the Italian top-flight, alongside Bologna and Hellas Verona.

Player to Watch

Lautaro Martinez

Inter Milan star Lautaro Martinez has a fine record against Salernitana. (Photo by Marco Luzzani/Getty Images)

The Argentine international ended his scoring drought by finding the back of the net against Barcelona. This should give Martinez the confidence to add to his tally this season and aid Inter Milan’s resurgence in the coming weeks.

Martinez also has an excellent record against Salernitana, netting four times in their last two games. He netted a hat-trick in the corresponding fixture last season and could do with more of the same on Sunday. The 25-year-old has a good rapport with Edin Dzeko and is likely to be Inter’s most dangerous attacker on Sunday.Β 

As long as he is in top form, the Salernitana defence will have plenty to be fearful about. With the World Cup coming up, Martinez now has the momentum to go on and build top form.

Prediction

Inter Milan 2-1 Salernitana

Inter Milan will hope to continue the momentum they created against Barcelona and also have home support to boot. Salernitana have lost five of their last six away games in Serie A and do not generally travel well. On paper, it should be an easy win for the home side who go into the game as favourites.

Given their patchy form and exhaustion, the game might not be as one sided as the ones we saw between both sides last season. However, Inter do have the quality and match winners to change the flow of the game and this should come in handy on Sunday. The Hard Tackle predicts a close win for the home side.

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