As the 1980’s came to an end, the Nerazzurri started their 1990-91 Serie A campaign as heavy favorites to win the league under the guidance of Giovanni Trapattoni.
With three reigning FIFA World Cup winners in the line-up, the black and blue side of Milan was a force to be reckoned with. Following a narrow Scudetto loss to Napoli the season before, Trapattoni’s men were eager to retake their Serie A crown from 2 years earlier.
On the flip side, Genoa FC were struggling to establish themselves after a mid-table finish in previous season. As the new season came around, the Rossoblu continued on the same path as the season before.
Heading into round fifteen match at San Siro against the Nerazzurri, Genoa was coming off of two straight losses. Rossoblu couldn’t afford a third straight loss, leading them to drop further down the table, into the relegation zone.
Trapattoni’s Inter started with Walter Zenga, Giuseppe Bergomi, Antonio Paganin, Sergio Battistini, Andreas Brehme, Fausto Pizzi, Lothar Matthaus, Alessandro Bianci, Nicola Berti, Jurgen Klinsmann and Aldo Serena.
Their opponents, coched by Osvaldo Bagnoli, had Simone Braglia, Vincenzo Torrente, Branco, Stefano Eranio, Nicola Caricola, Gianluca Signorini, Genaro Ruotolo, Mario Bortolazzi, Carlos Nova and Tomas Skuhravy starting the match for Genoa.
As the match got underway, the Nerazzurri got off to a perfect start. Klinsmann timed a run perfectly into the box and got on the receiving end of a beautiful Bergomi lob pass, to go through on goal.
However he was brought down by Genoa goal-keeper Simone Braglia and Inter were awarded an early penalty which Lothar Matthaus put away comfortably to give the home team the lead at the sixteen minute mark.
Not fazed by conceding the early goal, the visitors were threatening and dictating the flow of the game to get back on even terms. Soon after the play resumed, Genoa had striker Tomas Skuhravy through on goal following a beautiful through ball, slicing the Nerazzurri defenses open.
Skuhravy saw an opening at the far-left post where Carlos Nova was making a run into the box. Nova tucked away the shot to score what could potentially be the game tying goal. However the referee flagged Nova as offside and disallowed the goal. Genoa kept control of possession, which lead to plenty of scoring opportunities.
However the brilliance of Walter Zenga was on full-display as the Nerazzurri shot-stopper made one acrobatic save after another to keep the home side ahead and visibly frustrate the visitors. In the second half, both sides kept pressing on with similar tactics.
Genoa continuing to create opportunities and keeping possession of the ball, while Inter pressed high with their attackers and with rest of the side sitting back, looking for counter-attacking opportunities. Around the fifty-three minute mark, Klinsmann’s constant pressure on the Genoa center-backs, forced a poor back pass from Stefano Eranio to his goalkeeper which was easily intercepted by the German, who easily dribbled past the goalkeeper to score Inter’s second goal of the match to double the lead for Nerazzurri.
After the second goal, Inter started dictating the flow of the game as Genoa was forced on the back-foot. The roles were reversed as the Nerazzurri tried to slow the pace of the game and control possession a lot more.
However, Genoa finally made a break-through at seventy-two minute mark as Stefano Eranio found himself unmarked inside the penalty box, after receiving a perfectly weighted lobbed pass from the midfield and chipped the ball over an on-rushing Zenga to bring Genoa within a 1 goal margin.
As the game came to a close, Genoa’s striking duo’s hold-up play to open up the Nerazzurri defense, was troubling Trapattoni’s men. However, Zenga’s brilliance kept the home side ahead and secured the three points to remained tied as league leaders with a surprising Sampdoria side led by Gianluca Vialli.