Cagliari host Inter on Sunday evening in a fixture that could forge the fortunes of both promotion and relegation battles.
Cagliari, currently 18th on the points table, need to win against Simone Inzaghi’s men to make their way out of the relegation zone. Salernitana’s draw against Empoli on Saturday have already opened a narrow gateway leading to survival for the relegation-dwellers. But beating Inter, despite it being in a home fixture, could appear to be a gigantic task for the team looking for some consistency in their recent results.
On the other hand, the Nerazzurri are flying high after beating Juventus in the Coppa Italia final during the midweek. Dropping points could be fatal as far as Inter’s title race is concerned. But going up against a side fighting to avoid relegation is always a double-edged sword for a team looking to clinch a title. Will Inter survive the challenge? Time will tell.
The recent form (in the last five matches in Serie A)
Cagliari custodian Boris Radunović will miss the game through suspension. Nahitan Nández is still nursing his thigh injury and will be unavailable for the weekend’s game.
Inter have a full fit squad sans Matías Vecino. As per the reports, Vecino is injured and will miss the game against Cagliari. Bastoni could make his return to the starting XI for the first time in Serie A since doing the same against Milan last month.
Cagliari (3-5-2): Cragno; Ceppitelli, Lovato, Altare; Bellanova, Marin, Grassi, Rog, Dalbert; Pedro, Pavoletti
Inter (3-5-2): Handanovic; Skriniar, De Vrij, Bastoni; Dumfries, Barella, Brozovic, Calhanoglu, Perisic; Correa, Martinez
Inter just played 120 minutes of gruelling football against Juventus on Saturday. As such, passivity could soon creep into their game. Scoring some early goals could prove to be a panacea in that instance. But whether or not Cagliari will be able to impose their authority on the game remains to be seen.