Eto'o bagged a brace as Inter scored all their goals in the final 45 minutes.
Inter produced an inspired second-half comeback to defeat Genoa 5-2 and reduce the gap to league-leaders Milan back to five points. Rodrigo Palacio and Mauro Boselli goals proved only consolations as Inter stormed into the lead with strikes from Giampaolo Pazzini, Samuel Eto'o (2), Goran Pandev, and Yuto Nagatomo.
Leonardo welcomed back Maicon from suspension, while Argentine trio Diego Milito, Esteban Cambiasso and Walter Samuel remained sidelined due to injury. Wesley Sneijder started in the hole behind strike duo Eto'o and Pazzini.
Meanwhile, following the heated 2-1 loss to Catania last week, Domenico Criscito, Antonio Floro Flores, and Miguel Veloso were suspended along with coach Davide Ballardini.
Eto'o looked lively early on and had a goal ruled out for offside after just nine minutes. Maicon had cut inside and split the Grifoni backline with a superb pass, but the Cameroon international was whistled offside after touching the ball past goalkeeper Eduardo.
After a succession of shots from Rodrigo Palacio and Juraj Kucka were blocked by the Nerazzurri defence, they flew the other way on the counter and Emiliano Moretti's last-ditch tackle stopped Eto'o despite appeals for a penalty.
The visitors had a goal of their own ruled out. Alberto Paloschi's toe-poke past Julio Cesar called back for offside.
Inter somehow failed to score on 25 minutes after Eto'o megged Dario Dainelli on the counter attack and flew into the area, squaring the ball for Pazzini, but it was just inches ahead of the Italian international with the goal at his mercy and the chance went begging.
It was Genoa's turn to miss a golden chance soon after. Abdoulay Konko's shot turned into a cross for the completely unmarked Paloshi, however, the former Parma player couldn't turn the ball in from a tight angle with Inter's defence all at sea.
The Grifoni took the lead toward the end of the first-half. Konko's pass left the hosts exposed at the back and Palacio dribbled into the area before applying a precise and powerful finish across the 'keeper and into the bottom corner.
The second-half began with Sneijder attempting a long-range missile similar to his goal against Sampdoria last week from a set-piece, but Eduardo palmed it around the post as Inter were determined to get back into the match.
It didn't take long though, as Pazzini and Eto'o scored goals a minute apart to turn the match on it's head. Maicon burst down the right and put in a pinpoint low cross for the Italian to fire into the top of the net to make it 1-1. With the match barely restarted, Eduardo made a complete howler of substitute Goran Pandev's hit from outside the area which was tapped in by the African.
Eto'o completed his brace with nearly an hour gone to make it 3-1 and put the result beyond doubt. He pick-pocketed Giandomenico Mesto before bursting past two defenders and slotting the ball past Eduardo. Genoa had completely collapsed.
Inter's fourth involved brilliant interchange between Sneijder, Eto'o, and finally Pandev taking advantage of Moretti's failure to play the Macedonian offside with simple but quick passing on the edge ot the area for an easy tap-in.
Mauro Boselli nearly pulled one back on his Serie A debut, but curled just over the bar with Lucio and Andrea Ranocchia about to close him down. It was Ranocchia's last action against his former team, coming off for Yuto Nagatomo.
Nagatomo delighted the crowd with his first goal for his new club. Two substitutes combined as Houssine Kharja tapped the ball to the Japanese left-back inside the area and he spun around the defender to apply a striker's finish into the top corner.
Genoa found a late goal in vain, Boselli indeed getting on the board with a late header, but the Grifoni had been comprenhensively outplayed and it ended 5-2.
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