HERE are the key match-ups for tomorrow.
Inter Milan host AC Milan at Stadio San Siro tomorrow night (20:45 CET) and there is already a special atmosphere as this game, which could be very important for the title race.
The Rossoneri come from the first spot and a victory could give them a six-point advantage over bitter rivals Inter. Rossoneriblog.com takes a look at the key match-ups for tomorrow.
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Lucio vs. Zlatan Ibrahimovic
The Brazilian’s debut season with Inter was more than convincing as along with Walter Samuel, the defense of the Nerazzurri conceded only 34 goals in 38 matches in Serie A. However, with Samuel injured, Lucio, whose form has been hurt lately, will have a harder task against a great Milan attack. Whether he will be partnered with Ivan Cordoba or Marco Materazzi is unknown, but he will have to play his best in order to stop an in form Ibra.
The Sweden has found a new home in Milan. After three years at Juventus and three years at Inter, Zlatan wants to be also in the history books of the Rossoneri. Ibra has scored five Serie A goals, and has three assists. He is the player Milan wanted; he scores, but he also does a great defensive, especially in corners and free-kicks. Ibrahimovic knows the Nerazzurri well, but he will have to step up his game and give it all to break through Inter’s defense.
Wesley Sneijder vs. Gennaro Gattuso
The Dutch AM suffered from anemia in the last week but he promised he will be there for Inter. His quality is not questionable and last season he led Inter and Netherlands for the finals of the two most precious competitions in the world of football. The departure of Jose Mourinho might have affected the player and his form, but in any minute he can provide a killer pass or an outstanding long-shot and decide the game.
Gattuso’s job will be to stop Wesley. The Italian hardman has been in fantastic form in recent games and he’s coming to this derby are a week of rest following suspension. Gattuso has been playing a very good football and he excelled in matches against small teams, but also against Europe’s Lyons, like in the game against Real Madrid at the San Siro. A similar performance to what he did against Los Blancos should be enough to stop Inter’s midfielders from playing their game.
Samuel Eto’o & Diego Milito vs. Alessandro Nesta & Thiago Silva
The Cameroonian is Inter’s No. 1 man this season. Eto’o, after a mediocre first year in Italy, has settled well and without him this season, the Nerazzurri would probably have been far from the top. Eto’o is the man Milan need to fear – he’s deadly and in great form. The former Barcelona ace will be partnered with Milito. The Argentine was one of Inter’s best men in the famous treble year. But after a horrible World Cup, he’s just not the same player. Despite his bad form, he never forgot how to score.
The center-backs pair Sandro-Silva is probably one of the best in Italy. The ageing Italian brings his experience and positioning skills, while the Brazilian gives Milan a lot both in defense and attack. The two complete each other. Thiago had a great game against Palermo, while Nesta was rested for the derby. The two will have hard time against Eto’o and Milito, but so as the Inter’s strikers, against Nesta and Thiago Silva.
Rafael Benitez vs. Massimiliano Allegri
Last year this match up was between two other coaches: Jose Mourinho and Leonardo. However, both men moved on and now there are other people on the benches of the Nerazzurri and the Rossoneri. Benitez sticks with Mou’s 4-2-3-1; however it appears that he will prefer using Sneijder behind Eto’o and Milito in 4-3-1-2. Rafa has not been very convincing so far in the Serie A, but Massimo Moratti has full faith in him.
AC Milan haven’t been very convincing so far, but they have been getting the results they want. The Italian press is already saying that Allegri, who won the prize for Serie A Coach of the Season twice with Cagliari, is starting to prove his worth. Milan will probably use 4-3-1-2 with Clarence Seedorf behind Zlatan and the Brazilian Robinho. There are few injuries for Milan, but Silvio Berlusconi and Adriano Galliani back their coach.
By Meytar Zeevi, Rossoneri Blog
No Seedorf to starting line!!! It will be terrible… WHy not Pirlo as trequartista and behind him Boateng, Flamini & Gattuso?!
@Nle, I am not so sure about Pirlo as a trequartista, that position is very demanding physically, Pirlo is more suited to the deep-lying mid position.
Seedorf may not be the ideal player for this role, but he may be the best combination of attack and defense that we have for that position –you have to create from that role, but you also must fight for the 50/50 balls and track back. Not sure if Pirlo is up for all of that.
MILAN numero uno….
Gre8t write up.We gat no choice but 2 beat them and as well f**k their ass hole.