Every week SempreInter.com editorialist, Richard Hall, takes a look back at the glorious history of Inter by highlighting a certain match, hero or any other event in Inter’s history worthy of being labelled a Nerazzurri Classic. Ahead of Sunday’s fixture against Pescara, Richard looks back to the 1979/80 season when Evaristo Beccalossi led Inter to a 2-0 win away in anything but ideal playing circumstances.
Inter would finish the 1979/80 season as Champions, after an impressive campaign saw them win the league three points ahead of arch rivals Juventus. The march to the Scudetto was an impressive one that saw the Nerazzurri only lose three times in a fifteen team league. They had started the season with a 2-0 win against Pescara but when the teams met again in January the Milanese however, had lost their stride.
Under coach Eugenio Bersellini, Inter had assembles an impressive team. Helped by Director of Football, Sandro Mazzola and President Ivanoe Fraizzoli, the Nerazzurri finished Champions, reached the last sixteen of the UEFA Cup and went out in the Coppa Italia in the quarter finals. The key names in the campaign began with the hard yet agile Ivan Bordon in goal, the back line was consisted of Giuseppe Baresi, Giuseppe Bergomi and Captain Graziano Bini. Midfield was run by the impressive Evaristo Beccalossi and Giampero Marni whilst the front man was none other than Alessandro Altobelli who would finish as top scorer that year with 15 Serie A goals, 22 in all competitions.
Pescara had a terrible campaign that term and in the end were relegated along with, surprisingly, AC Milan and Lazio. Albeit the latter two were sent down as punishment for the involvement in the Totonero scandal and this only highlighted Pescara’s poor form as they finished with only 16 points, a full five away from 13th placed Udinese.
Never the less despite Inter’s good start to the season, coming up to Christmas they struggled. In December they only managed a 1-1 draw with Cagliari before narrowly beating Perugia at home 3-2. Then they lost 1-0 at the Stadio Olimpico to Roma, drew with Fiorentina and although taking an early lead against Ascoli they later conceded to end the game level. As the turn of the year came they travelled to the Adriatic coast on a clear but crisp day to take on bottom boys Pescara.
The game started with Inter attacking with pace but despite looking like they maybe swamping their opponents, the chances were poor. Blocked shots, poor crossed and a terrible free kick simply represented everything that had been wrong in the previous games. If chance conversion was a problem for Inter then Pescara took this to another level and squandered the few they had with considerable negligence. Just as the game seemed to be deteriorating into farce, the Nerazzurri managed to break through. After what should have been a free kick, the away team played on and after some intricate passing in the box Beccalossi found himself digging a ball out from underneath his feet and smashing the ball in at the near post.
Both teams spent the rest of the half trying to ‘out-miss’ the other and at half time the game ended 1-0 to the visitors. The second half followed suit with Inter huffing and puffing and even allowing the home side to miss some guilt edged chances. Had Pescara had a striker in form then they could have had the game put to bed early on in the second period. In the end though a fine flowing move saw substitute Giancarlo Pasini ran on to a good through ball and smashed it hard into the bottom left with venom.
It was enough not only to win the game 2-0 but also it kick started Inter’s campaign that eventually saw them crowned champions. This may have been a win in picturesque surroundings but it certainly wasn’t pretty.
Richard Hall is an Italian Football writer who contributes to BTSport, ESPNFC, Guardian Sport, Football Italia, CalcioMercato.com, BeISportsUSA, SiriusXMFC.