Inter Milan will face Fiorentina in a bid to secure their successive Coppa Italia title on Wednesday night

Two of Italy’s three European finalists, Inter Milan and Fiorentina will face off against each other in the Coppa Italia final on Wednesday night. It will be the first of two major finals either side will play in the coming weeks.

Inter Milan will face Manchester City in the UEFA Champions League final in June and could ramp up their momentum, by successfully securing their Coppa Italia title this week. A win will see them win the competition over consecutive campaigns for the first time since 2008.

Given Juventus’s 10-point penalty, Inter have more or less guaranteed themselves a spot in next season’s Champions League. This means they can now focus all their attention on the two cup finals. Having rediscovered their top form at the right time, Simone Inzaghi will be keen for his side to carry over that momentum until the summer break.

Meanwhile, Fiorentina are coming off the back of an average league campaign that sees them linger in mid-table. La Viola, however, have enjoyed better luck in the Cups, having qualified not just for the Coppa Italia showdown but also the final of the UEFA Europa Conference League against West Ham United.

The 1960-61 European Cup Winners Cup remains Fiorentina’s lone continental success and they now have the opportunity to add another feather to their cap. The 2001 Coppa Italia is La Viola’s most recent trophy and they will be keen to get the better of a high-flying Inter side to secure a seventh Italian Cup.

Inter are a sort of Cup specialist under Inzaghi and beat off several top sides in knockout games in recent months. Having already won the Supercoppa Italiana earlier in the campaign, the Nerazzurri have a chance to secure a treble of sorts.

The last time Fiorentina met a team from Milan in the Coppa Italia final was in 1975 when they beat AC Milan 3-2 to secure the crown. They will hope for a similar showing on the night. Despite going into the game as heavy underdogs, La VioIa should fancy their chances in a one-off clash.

Inter have been really inconsistent this season and are finding a semblance of consistency and dominance at the right time. They could not have peaked at a better moment and now find themselves on the cusp of glory.

The Nerazzurri have held an advantage over Fiorentina in recent times but their most recent meeting in Serie A saw Giacomo Bonaventura stun the crowd at the Giuseppe Meazza. The result should play on both teams’ minds, acting as a leveller of sorts going into the match.

The last time both the teams played each other in the competition was in 2020/21 when Inter won 2-1 in the round of 16. The game was settled in extra time and a similar level of competitiveness can be expected on the night. It promises to be a hard-fought tie with neither side yielding an inch. The Hard Tackle looks at how both sides could line up on the night and what tactics they might employ.

Team News & Tactics

ACF Fiorentina

Vincenzo Italiano’s appointment has proven to be a bane for Fiorentina, especially when it comes to cup competitions. The La Viola squad remains consistent in playing the Jekyll and Hyde role in the league but know they are just two wins away from writing the names in club history.

Fiorentina last won a trophy when Roberto Mancini led them to the Coppa Italia title in 2001. Italiano can now join the esteemed company should he pull off an upset on the night. The extra-time win over FC Basel in Europe showcased Fiorentina’s fighting spirit and should make them dogged contenders on the night.

Having rested several top players in their weekend draw against Torino, Fiorentina look set to welcome back key players on the night. This includes skipper Cristiano Biraghi, top scorer Arthur Cabral, and World Cup hero Sofyan Amrabat. The Moroccan is attracting attention from several top clubs and leading La Viola to a trophy or two will only boost his reputation further.

Salvatore Sirigu is ruled out for the season and will sit out of the game. However, one player who will return is Giacomo Bonaventura who scored the winner against them the last time they met. He will certainly be smacking his lips in anticipation of a repeat.

Italiano is likely to retain his 4-3-3 formation with Pietro Terracciano in goal. He will be protected by a back four of Dodo, Nikola Milenkovic, Igor Julio, and Cristiano Biraghi.

Amrabat will hold the fort in the middle of the park with Bonaventura and Rolando Mandragora flanking him in the middle of the park. How well the trio can handle Inter’s midfield three will set the pace of the game.

Nicolas Gonzalez and Jonathan Ikone will start out wide upfront with Arthur Cabral leading the line. Luka Jovic is likely to start on the bench and will be expected to come on should Fiorentina trail.

Probable Lineup (4-3-3): Terracciano; Dodo, Milenkovic, Igor, Biraghi; Bonaventura, Amrabat, Mandragora; Gonzalez, Cabral, Ikone

ACF Fiorentina vs Inter Milan Preview: Probable Lineups, Prediction, Tactics, Team News & Key Stats.

Inter Milan

A month ago, Inter Milan were the epitome of inconsistency but are today the most formidable Italian side in terms of current form. Inzaghi deserves credit for turning his side’s fortunes around and now stands on the periphery of being added to the club’s list of legendary managers.

The Italian tactician rested several of his top players at the weekend against Napoli and is in line to bring them back into the starting XI on the night. Inter will be without two key absentees in Milan Skriniar and Henrikh Mkhitaryan, both of who are injured.

The Nerazzurri will reprise their 3-5-2 formation with Samir Handanovic starting in goal. The veteran goalkeeper has been the preferred option in goal in the competition and could be set for a glorious final chapter in his career with Inter.

The rest of the team more or less picks itself given the current form and the need for consistency. The back three is likely to be Matteo Darmian, Francesco Acerbi, and Alessandro Bastoni.

Marcelo Brozovic should replace the injured Mkhitaryan in central midfield alongside regulars Nicolo Barella and Hakan Calhanoglu. Denzel Dumfries and Federico Dimarco were both rested at the weekend and should have plenty in reserve out wide on the night.

Veteran striker Edin Dzeko should partner Lautaro Martinez up front with Romelu Lukaku set to settle for a spot on the bench. The Belgian has also been in good form of late and can be brought off the bench if Inter need to throw the kitchen sink at Fiorentina.

Probable Lineup (3-5-2): Handanovic; Darmian, Acerbi, Bastoni; Dumfries, Barella, Brozovic, Calhanoglu, Dimarco; Martinez, Dzeko

ACF Fiorentina vs Inter Milan Preview: Probable Lineups, Prediction, Tactics, Team News & Key Stats.

Key Stats

  • Inter Milan have won the competition eight times in their history, the most recent one coming last season.
  • Fiorentina have won the competition six times, the most recent of their wins coming back in 2001 under Roberto Mancini.
  • Fiorentina and Inter Milan have played each other 13 times in the Coppa Italia so far, with either side winning five games apiece.
  • Fiorentina have not defeated Inter Milan in the Coppa Italia since 1995/96.
  • Inter Milan are on a four-game winning streak against Fiorentina in the Coppa Italia.

Player to Watch

Sofyan Amrabat

Embed from Getty Images

The Moroccan international midfielder was one of the 2022 FIFA World Cup’s standout players and could be playing his final few games in La Viola colours. Full of energy and ready to put it all on the line, Amrabat will be a difficult player to handle in the middle of the park.

Facing off against Nicolo Barella is no easy feat, but the Fiorentina man is more than capable of shackling the Italian. Doing so will limit Inter’s ability to carry the ball forward in the central areas, forcing Martinez to drop deeper. This should make it easy for La Viola to isolate Dzeko. Small margins matter in a cup final, especially against a superior side like Inter.


ACF Fiorentina 1-2 Inter Milan (After Extra Time)

Both teams are set to give it their all and it should prove to be a hard-fought contest. Both teams are also discovering their best form this season and will be keen to carry a winning form to their respective European finals. The game is likely to be close with Inter’s superior quality and better options off the bench turning the tie in their favour.

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