Inter Milan will look to keep the pressure on rivals AC Milan at the top of Serie A when they travel to Cagliari on Sunday at 11:30am (UK time).
The Nerazzurri are enjoying a six-game unbeaten streak in league play, which has seen them rise to second in the table, although they’re still five points adrift of early leaders AC Milan. Cagliari, meanwhile, have been inconsistent in 2020/21 so far, but are comfortably tucked away in 11th place.
Where to watch Cagliari vs Inter Milan on TV:
- UK: Premier Sports 1
- US: ESPN+
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Scoreline prediction: Cagliari 0-2 Inter Milan
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Cagliari vs Inter Milan build-up, previous line-ups & injury news:
Despite crashing out of the Champions League (and European football as a whole after finishing bottom of Group B), Antonio Conte’s men have been in fine domestic form, losing just one of their opening 10 league games and scoring more goals (26) than any other Serie A team.
With no continental distractions, Inter fans will be expecting a serious title challenge from their side this season and if the likes of Romelu Lukaku and Lautaro Martinez can keep firing, there’s no doubting they can overhaul AC Milan and wrestle the title from perennial winners, Juventus.
They travel to a Cagliari side in the midst of a frustrating search for consistency this season. Eusebio Di Francesco’s side haven’t gone more than three games without defeat in Serie A this season thanks largely to their leaky defence, which has conceded the third-highest number of goals (20) in the Italian top flight so far.
To make matters worse, the Islanders have won just one of their last eight meetings with this weekend’s visitors, with all the omens pointing to their latest three-game unbeaten streak being ended.
- Cagliari (vs Verona): Cragno; Farago, Walukiewicz, Carboni, Tripaldelli; Marin, Rog; Zappa, Pedro, Sottil; Pavoletti.
- Inter (vs Shakhtar Donetsk): Handanovic; Skriniar, De Vrij, Bastoni; Hakimi, Barella, Brozovic, Gagliardini, Young; Lukaku, Martinez.
Giovanni Simeone is ready for a return to action this weekend but Diego Godin, Adam Ounas, Gaston Pereiro and Nahitan Nandez are all out.
Andrea Pinamonti and Matias Vecino remain sidelined for Inter, while Radja Nainggolan, Arturo Vidal and Aleksandar Kolarov are all doubts.
Player to watch: Achraf Hakimi (Inter Milan)
Romelu Lukaku quite rightly takes most of the plaudits for Inter’s attacking play. After all, the Belgian striker does have eight Serie A goals to his name already this season. However, special attention should be paid to the man serving the ball to the former Man Utd and Everton striker, Achraf Hakimi. The Moroccan wing-back has already assisted two of Lukaku’s eight goals this season — the second-highest creator-to-goalscorer ratio in Serie A — while netting three goals of his own in a very productive start to life in Milan.
Hakimi ranks third among Inter players when it comes to completed take-ons (9) in Serie A this season while, on the other side of the ball, only Arturo Vidal (26) has won the ball in the defensive third more than the 22-year-old (22). Cagliari have struggled for any sort of defensive solidity so far this season so Hakimi’s role this weekend will likely be an attacking one — Conte will be relying on him to fire in more dangerous deliveries for the likes of Lukaku and Martinez.
Serie A 2020/21 recent form:
- Cagliari: DDLWL
- Inter: WWWDD
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