Preview – Benevento vs Inter: Getting a convincing win before the break
The last match before the International break and the derby is against hapless Benevento and Inter will have to flex some real muscle to keep momentum up through the break and onto the derby. Kick-off on Sunday at 15:00 CET.
The word torrid can’t begin to describe debutantes Benevento’s start to the Serie A campaign. The “Wizards” from Campania have not managed to get a single point and have scored just one goal in their six matches so far. While it is always advisable to respect one’s opposition and face every match with humility, it is difficult to expect anything but a comprehensive win by Inter against the league minnows.
Luciano Spaletti will be not likely change too much from the tactics used against Genoa, but it is entirely possible that either Eder or Yann Karamoh may start ahead of the underwhelming Antonio Candreva on the right flank. The midfield trio to start the match is always open to speculation with all of Joao Mario, Roberto Gagliardino, Borja Valero, Matias Vecino and Marcelo Brozovic all competing for said three positions.
It has become apparent that Inter’s starting eleven find the most success when using high intensity passing and pressing, moving the ball about quickly into the opponents’ final thirds. The only problem with that style of play is that it has also become apparent that the Nerazzurri are unable to maintain that same level of intensity for more that 20-30 minutes each match. Once the output drops, especially when facing a defensively tight opponent, the Nerazzurri are plagued with a lack of ideas as to how to break through the opponent’s fortifications. Against Genoa, it appeared that the proverbial coin dropped for Spalleti when he decided to play all of Eder, Joao Mario, Karamoh, Perisic and Icardi in order to exert sufficient pressure and get the win. Whether Spaletti will start with such an audacious lineup remains unlikely but it is good to know that the tactician has a tried solution up his sleeve should Benevento prove to be more resilient than their record foretells.
Despite not featuring once so far in a first-team fixture, the cruciate ligament injury to Primavera starlet Zinho Vanheudsen has dominated headlines midweek. The young Belgian was famously declared by Piero Ausilio as suitable cover to at center back, justifying the club’s lack of investment in that position. While the injury changes little with regards to Spaletti’s starting eleven selection, it certainly puts the entire club on edge when worrying about injuries to defenders.
Probable Inter line-up (subject to change): (4-2-3-1) Handanovic; Dalbert, Miranda, Skriniar, D’Ambrosio; Valero, Gagliardini; Perisic, Joao Mario, Candreva; Icardi (C)
Last Season: Not played, Benevento in Serie B.
Last 10 Head to Head:Since this is Benevento’s debut season in Italy’s top flight, this will be the first league encounter between both sides.
Keep an Eye on
Joao Mario: Joao Mario has been a bit of an enigma for the club. His performances have ranged from world-class to anonymous pedestrian. What is a certainty is that when he comes off the bench he is always a very useful addition to the squad, and so it will be important for midfielder to show that he can consistently have the same impact when selected to play from the first minute.
Refereree: Daniele Doveri
Assistants: De Meo, Di Vuolo
Fourth Official: Fourneau
Additional Assistants: Valeri, Giallatini
Prediction & Authors Note
Prediction & scorers: Benevento 0-3 Inter with Icardi, Joao Mario and Karamoh scoring.
Author’s Note: Despite last week’s win against Genoa having been hard fought and not a result of particularly beautiful football, it was a very important victory nonetheless. Now is the time for the Nerazzurri to make a statement by combing both quality of play and end result.