A match against Mazzarri’s Torino seems like meeting a bitter ex, along with an ex-manager, Torino have no less than four previous Inter players in their expected starting eleven. Match on Sunday at 12:30 CET
There’s no better match for Inter to complete its Phoenix rising from the ashes tale than that against Torino. With a plethora of ex-Nerazzurri players and coaches, a win here will really cement the idea of a new Inter rising from the ashes of a previous eight years of mediocrity.
Walter Mazzarri will relish the opportunity of halting Inter’s European aspirations and will probably be more concerned with not conceding than actually scoring. Despite Torino netting eight in their last two matches, expect them to sit deep, play wide and risk very little against the Nerazzurri. While Torino’s attacking trident of Iago Falque, Adem Ljajic and Andrea Belotti can trouble any defensive unit in the league, they are coming up against a very in-form defence that has kept clean sheets in its last five matches.
Luciano Spaletti has alluded to the fact that he will probably start the same eleven again, with the possibility of Yann Karamoh making a more regular appearance off the bench as his fitness improves. With Torino’s midfield enforcer Tomas Rincon suspended for the match, it will be up to Inter’s midfield trio to capitalize on his absence and try and own the middle of the pitch. Shutting down Torino’s ability to deliver quality balls to their attacking trio will be fundamentally important in neutralizing the Granata’s threat.
As Inter continues to slowly rebuild its European hopes for next season, it will be matches like this; tough mid-table away encounters that can derail the Nerazzurri comeback. All will be extra-vigilant and keep must keep an eye on the proverbial and literal ball.
Good news out of the Inter camp has been the fitness of Joao Miranda and his clearance to start the match. There are no other real injuries to have to deal with, Spaletti will be able to select his preferred starting eleven regardless of physical condition. It is likely that Spaletti will use the same starting eleven as he did against Milan, and has been using in the last few matches.
Probable Inter line-up (subject to change): (4-2-3-1) Handanovic; D’Ambrosio, Miranda, Skriniar, Cancelo; Brozovic, Gagliardini; Perisic, Rafinha, Candreva; Icardi (C)
Last Season: Torino 2 – 2 Inter
Last 10 Head to Head: Draws have been the name of the game between the two sides as of late, with 5 draws in the last ten matches. However, when it comes to actual wins, Inter have a slight edge on Torino with three wins to Toro’s two.
Keep an Eye on
Mauro Icardi: It’s highly unusual for Interisti to search for their hero and not find him. Such was the case midweek in the derby. In a highly unusual twist of events, Icardi missed not one, but two chances that he would normally bury in the back of the net blindfolded. There’s no doubt that Maurito will be chomping at the bit to make amends on Sunday.
Referee: Paolo Tagliavento
Assistants: Meli, Vuoto
Fourth Official: Fourneau
Additional Assistants: Maresca, Posado
Prediction & Authors Note
Prediction & scorers: Torino 0-2 Inter with Icardi, Rafinha bringing home the points for Inter.
Author’s Note: While the result in the Derby might leave a bit of a bitter taste in Interisti’s mouths, there’s no doubt that very importantly, the squad has rediscovered a sense of unity, levity and performance that had been missing during the middle of season meltdown. Against Torino, all the previous qualities will needed to take back all three points.