Last weekend would have felt like an opportunity missed for Inter but they were back to good thoughts by midweek. In their latest league game Inter could only draw 0-0 away to Udinese. A point is good away from home but it would have felt like loss given that rivals Milan lost at home to Atalanta.
This past week presented a chance for Inter to join Milan on the same points, but it wasn’t to be. However Inter did close the gap to just 2 points to Milan and have applied a little more pressure on them. However Roma and Juventus also won at the weekend and the pressure is now on Inter themselves.
As for the Udinese game Inter were the best team and had more of the possession and some genuine chances on goal. They stayed well disciplined at the back and reduced Udinese to just 1 shot on target the whole game. Inter never seemed like they were going to lose this match, but they would have been frustrated at not scoring at least one goal.
Lautaro Martinez thought he had scored a goal for Inter after just six minutes of the game but VAR ruled it out for offside. Man of the moment Achraf Hakimi who for a defender has been superb in front of goal this season almost won the game for Inter with just a quarter of an hour left to play but his shot skimmed the post. It was one of those games that simply wasn’t to be for Inter. However they did avoid defeat and have now gone 3 games unbeaten.
Not beating Udinese though was overshadowed by Inter coach Antonio Conte being sent off just before the final whistle. Conte had a clash of words with the referee that reportedly continued after the game and in the tunnel where insults were heard. Whilst Conte could be looking at a two game suspension from the dug out the Italian FA may also look into what Fabio Maresca, the referee also said and he himself could be looking at a suspension.
Inter knock rivals Milan out of the Coppa Italia
Whatever the disappointment at the weekend it was made up in midweek in the Coppa Italia as the game of the round which had been hyped up for some time was won by Inter in the Milan derby.
What made the victory extra sweet for Inter was that they were losing the game 1-0 courtesy of a Zlatan Ibrahimovic opener. However with 20 minutes to go Inter were awarded a penalty and Romelu Lukaku converted it. But the game would end in dramatic style.
In the 97th minute, the game had to be extended because of injury breaks, who else but Christian Eriksen got the winner and sent Inter through to the next round. As everyone connected with Italian football knows Eriksen looked like a sure fire deal to be transferred out of the club this month as he didn’t seem to fit in Conte’s plans. But the coach had a change of heart just before Christmas and decided to keep Eriksen at the club, for this game at least that decision paid off richly.
Romelu v Zlatan
Romelu Lukaku and Milan’s Zlatan Ibrahimovic clashed on the pitch as the two brilliant strikers reached boiling point. It seemed that the two clashed on the pitch and Lukaku had reportedly ‘invited’ Ibrahimovic to meet him after the match. It sounded like fighting talk. Ibrahimovic is said to have replied ‘do your voodoo s***’.
Racial allegations were then thrown towards Ibrahimovic although it was quickly pointed out that the voodoo reference was a joke from Lukaku’s days at his former club Everton.
Ibrahimovic has since apologised to Milan for the row with Lukaku which ended with the Swede sent off just before the hour mark. On reflection it seems that Ibrahimovic was not being racist but cheeky, oh these derbies always bring out passions, and this match was no different. Who can wait for the Milan derby in the league? That game is scheduled for February 21st.
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