Inter held by Sampdoria

Posted on February 25, 2008. Filed under: Inter, serie a, Video | Tags: , , , , , |

Inter paid a visit to Sampdoria this week hoping to put the Champion’s League defeat to Liverpool behind them. Unfortunately the trip to Anfield cost them the services of solid and speedy Cordoba. He damaged the ACL in his knee and will be out for some time. Mancini also had to rest Ibrahimovic and Cruz with the former also suffering from a knee injury although much less severe. Crespo and Suazo were paired up and given a start although neither was particularly impressive.

The match was all Sampdoria to begin with as Cassano continued to inspire and dictate play. Inter slowly began to assert themselves more and more as the game continued but Sampdoria gave them a warning shot on 47 minutes. A goal that was ruled out for offside. Not long after, Cassano’s perseverance paid off as he squeezed past the Inter defense and smashed a rocket into the net on 65 minutes. The goal must’ve shocked Inter into gear as they desperately worked to salvage something from this match.

Crespo was finally able to find the net and preserve Inter’s unbeaten domestic record. The Argentine put away a diving header from a Stankovic cross. Inter grabbed a point to take home but Roma closed the gap to 9 points. A very important match between the two will take place on Wednesday, the result could be enough to put the Scudetto beyond reach or really open up the title race. Enjoy the video highlights below.

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Cordoba out for return leg

Posted on February 23, 2008. Filed under: Inter, Players, UEFA | Tags: , , , |

Cordoba went to ground during the second half of the champions league encounter between Inter and Liverpool. He was immediately replaced and could be seen clutching his knee in some pain. It’s been revealed that the damage is worse than first expected and he has injured his ACL (anterior cruciate ligament). This injury is much more common in soccer than Ronaldo’s injury which ruptured his patella tendon but it can be about as serious. Cordoba may have only partially torn his ACL but will still need surgery. He is definitely out of the return leg where Inter have their work cut out. A real shame as he was solid as ever during the match.

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Inter vs Liverpool CL – second half and highlights

Posted on February 21, 2008. Filed under: Inter, UEFA, Video | Tags: , , |

Continuing my post from yesterday’s match, there was a good chance for Liverpool just after the restart when Finnan played a 1-2 and could have caused a lot of trouble if he wasn’t blocked. Mancini was forced to remove Cruz for Vieira on 54 minutes and leave Ibrahimovic alone in attack due to the missing player. On 57 minutes, Julio Caesar was called into action again, saving brilliantly after Torres received a fortunate rebound which set him on his way. On the hour mark Vieira was lucky not to give away a penalty after handling the ball in the area and Liverpool continued their domination in everything except goals. 73% possession in the second half and so many chances. Torres almost found the net a few minutes later and Lucas was replaced by Crouch in an attempt to use his ridiculous height.

It wasn’t until 67 minutes until Inter had their first corner and a minute later Ibrahimovic and Cambiasso were involved in a nice interchange which ultimately saw the Swede in an offside position. Rafa replaced Babel with Pennant, hoping to use his pace on the right but he caused little worry for Inter. Vieira had a shot but it was quite wide. A couple of minutes later Crouch had a real chance but he wasted it in trying to do too much. Unfortunately, Cordoba fell awkwardly and had to go off for Burdisso, a real shame because he was solid the entire match prevent any and all Liverpool attacks. On 82 minutes Inter had a good chance on the break with Vieira running at the defense but his pass to Ibrahimovic was lacking. Finally in the 84th minute Liverpool scored. Kuyt shot at goal and it was deflected downward off Maicon’s boot and ended up bouncing just in front of Julio Cesar who did not have time to readjust. Five minutes later Gerrard sealed the win with a shot into the far post.

Inter will host Liverpool in the return leg but have a lot to do now thanks to bad refereeing. Check out the highlights below.

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Inter vs Liverpool CL – first half update

Posted on February 20, 2008. Filed under: Inter, UEFA | Tags: , , |

The first half of this heavyweight clash began with the home side having most of the possession and pressuring Inter a lot in the first 10 minutes. The ref was handing out yellow cards like they were going out of fashion as Torres fell with any light knock. On three minutes the first went to Chivu with Aurellio putting the resulting free kick over the bar. Julio Cruz and Cordoba were solid in denying the early Liverpool chances. On 11 minutes, Materazzi picked up a yellow which was very soft as Torres fell while out-pacing the Italian to the ball.

Liverpool were marking Ibrahimovic very tightly and allowing very little space for Inter’s attack. As time went on Inter began to get into the match a lot more but generally sloppy passing was preventing them building up well. With 29 minutes on the clock, another soft Torres drop to the ground saw Materazzi pick up his second yellow and head off for an early shower. An incredibly harsh and ridiculous decision which left Inter with a lot to do. Next Torres tried to lure Cambiasso with a few cheeky slaps on the face as the young Spaniard gave away a free kick but the experienced midfielder wasn’t falling for his bait. On 44 minutes Liverpool had one of their best chances with a cut across the face of goal but now one to put it away and Maicon cleared fairly casually.

Barely a minute of stoppage time as the teams paused for the break but Inter with a great deal to do now! More to follow later…

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Inter vs Livorno (2-0)

Posted on February 17, 2008. Filed under: Inter, serie a, Video | Tags: , , |

Inter took full advantage of the second place battle between Juventus and Roma which caused the latter to miss out on points and almost second place. Inter opened up their lead on the league to 11 points and can probably already taste that third consecutive scudetto.

Suazo was given a start as Ibrahimovic and Cruz were rested for the important champions league match with Liverpool in several days. He did not waste the opportunity and sealed the win with an early brace. The first goal was a header through Amelia’s legs off a Chivu free kick and the second goal made use of a defensive blunder on Livorno’s part, a simple tap in.

Check the highlights below.

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Diego magic

Posted on February 4, 2008. Filed under: Players, Video | Tags: , , , , , |

I found an amazing goal from Diego at the offside today which was voted the best goal of 2007 on a German Bundesliga TV show, Sportschau. I’ve included the video footage of the goal below. It’s just one small taste of why the Brazilian playmaker is such a sought after talent at the moment. Werder Bremen will do well to hold on to him, if they can.

He rose to glory at Brazilian club Santos where another young prodigy by the name of Robinho made up the league-winning side. His silky skills, brilliant passing and great shooting made him the perfect number 10. He was snatched up by Porto but was never really given a chance to shine after falling out with the coach at the time. He has since seen a revival at Werder Bremen and even Inter are watching him closely.

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Inter vs Juventus TIM Cup

Posted on January 31, 2008. Filed under: Inter, serie a, Video | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , |

Found a good clip (in terms of the highlights) for the match played yesterday where Inter faced off with Juventus in the TIM cup quarter final. Inter ended up winning the match 3-2 to book a place in the semi-finals against Lazio (5-4 winners on aggregate).

It was Inter’s 17 year old striker, Mario Balotelli, that was the star of the show with a brace of goals each side of half time. For his first goal he saw off Birindelli and then controlled Maniche’s ball allowing a simple tap into the far post. Del Piero responded with a free kick that took a deflection off the Inter wall before landing in the net, Toldo could only watch. Juve went ahead on 31 minutes after Toldo tipped another Del Piero free kick into the top post allowing Iaquinta to head in the rebound from close range. Just before the break, Salihamidzic handled the ball in the box and Julio Cruz made no mistake from the resulting spot kick. Balotelli soon struck again after the restart, grabbing on to a Stankovic ball, turnings and shooting into the top right corner.

Ranieri saw Juve’s exit from the cup fast approaching and brought on Trezeguet and Camoranesi but even they had little impact. It was Inter that continued to push and put the result beyond doubt. Camoranesi got a straight red for and ugly challenge on Pele, Inter’s young Portuguese midfielder, and hence left Juve with little way to make a comeback. Enjoy the highlights.

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Inter vs Parma 3-2

Posted on January 22, 2008. Filed under: Inter, serie a, Video | Tags: , , , |

Inter continued their winning ways and amazing unbeaten record, this time against Parma. The game was played on the weekend and the win continues to keep Roma at bay with 7 points difference. This match was certainly a controversial affair.

The ever-reliable midfield presence of Cambiasso started off the scoring with a trademark, cool, calm and collected goal. Although Parma was lost for a while after that goal, they found the net to equalise in a nice, well-finished, team effort. Both teams continued to come close to breaking the deadlock but eventually it was Parma that went in front with an amazing free kick, Parma 2-1.

This woke Inter up and they began to press even harder, including a disallowed goal. They were awarded a penalty when Couto was judged to have handled the ball in the area. This was a very difficult call because it really looked like it was a hand-ball but only in slow-motion is it possible to see that he did in fact head the ball away. Personally I feel it was stupid of him to place his arm in such a close position to the ball as it made it look like a hand-ball. In fact it’s more than likely that he had the arm ready for if his head missed anyway. Either way, Ibrahimovic made no mistake from the spot, 2-2. To finish of the drama, Ibrahimovic scored once again to hand Inter full points in a beautiful, well-controlled strike. Chesting down a cross into the path of his right boot in the middle of the Parma box, an amazing piece of control, strength and finesse.

See the highlights for yourself.

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Ibrahimovic magic

Posted on January 14, 2008. Filed under: Inter, Players, serie a, Video | Tags: , , |

Ibrahimovic scored a fantastic goal on the weekend in Inter’s 3-2 win over Siena. The long range effort was purely unstoppable.

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Inter vs AC Milan 2-1

Posted on December 24, 2007. Filed under: Inter, serie a, Video | Tags: , , , , , , , , |

A quick post to summarise the result between Inter and Milan in the classic Milan derby.

The game ended 2-1 in Inter’s favour with goals from Julio Cruz and Cambiasso on either side of half-time. Adrea Pirlo opened the scoring to put Milan up 1-0 from a trademark free-kick just outside the box around 17 mins although Ibrahimovic was unlucky not to score early on with a powerful volley just above the bar from a Maicon cross.

Dida saved Milan on 19 minutes by tipping away a cross that was about to hit the feet of an Inter player. He took a knock from one of his players for his trouble and almost conceded as the ball was shot into the bar from the deflection. Around 32 minutes, Kaka’ went on a blazing run that had Samuel not knowing which way to turn, in fact it looked like he twisted his knee on the final turn. On 35 minutes, Julio Cruz leveled the score with a pin-point accurate shot, slotting the ball through defenders, legs and the near post.

There were signs a second goal was coming and on 62 minutes, Cambiasso took a shot that wrong-footed Dida who could only helplessly wave his legs aroung in a futile attempt to deflect the ball away, 2-1 Inter. Finally towards the end of the game Kaka’ had a volley saved by his fellow country-man, Julio Cesar. He was also unlucky not to score and could very well have tied the match.

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