Roma-Inter Preview: High stakes at Stadio Olimpico
The pair go into the clash desperate for victory to serve their own respective interests, as the Giallorossi cling on to a top-six spot and Andrea Stramaccioni's men chase Juventus
By Alec Fenn
Piris, Marquinhos, Castan, Balzaretti
Pjanic, De Rossi, Florenzi
Lamela, Destro, Totti
Ranocchia, Chivu, Juan Jesus
Zanetti, Guarin, Gargano, C'biasso, Pereira
Just a matter of weeks into 2013 and Inter head into Sunday's clash in the knowledge they cannot afford any more slip-ups if they are to keep pace with Serie A leaders Juventus.
Seven points separate fourth-placed Nerazzurri and the Bianconeri, while Roma lie just six adrift of Andrea Stramaccioni's side as they bid to cement their place in the top-six.
Both sides secured their place in the semi-finals of the Coppa Italia in midweek - the Giallorossi grinding out a 1-0 win over Fiorentina, while Inter needed extra time to see off Bologna - meaning they will also face one another three days later in the first leg.
The hosts will be without Pablo Osvaldo, Maarten Stekelenburg and Alessio Romagnoli through injury, while the visitors have a lengthy injury list to contend with, as Dejan Stankovic, Luca Castellazzi, Yuto Nagatomo, Ricky Alvarez, Walter Samuel, Antonio Cassano and Coutinho all miss out.
|DID YOU KNOW?|
- Inter have endured an inconsistent start to 2013, losing to Udinese, beating Pescara and scraping past Bologna in the Coppa Italia.
- Andrea Stramaccioni's side have been hampered by an extensive injury list that sees seven first team players absent through injury - including Antonio Cassano (right).
- Inter and Roma will face one another in the semi-final of the Coppa Italia in midweek.
- Roma currently sit in sixth spot in Serie A, six points behind Inter but just a point in front of seventh-placed AC Milan.
- Erik Lamela and Pablo Osvaldo are the club's two joint-top goalscorers, both having struck 10 times.
- Zdenek Zeman's side are the top scorers in Serie A with 43 goals, but they have also conceded 34 times.
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Top 3 Predictions
Roma 1-2 FC Internazionale
- 14.49 %
Roma 1-3 FC Internazionale
- 10.01 %
Roma 0-2 FC Internazionale
- 7.47 %
|Italy - Serie A (ITA1)||Mar 1, 2014||Roma 0 - FC Internazionale 0|
|Italy - Serie A (ITA1)||Oct 5, 2013||FC Internazionale 0 - Roma 3|
|Italy - Coppa Italia (ITAC)||Apr 17, 2013||FC Internazionale 2 - Roma 3|
|Italy - Coppa Italia (ITAC)||Jan 23, 2013||Roma 2 - FC Internazionale 1|
|Italy - Serie A (ITA1)||Jan 20, 2013||Roma 1 - FC Internazionale 1|
|Mar 1, 2014||Roma 0 - FC Internazionale 0||ITA1|
|Feb 22, 2014||Bologna 0 - Roma 1||ITA1|
|Feb 16, 2014||Roma 3 - Sampdoria 0||ITA1|
|Feb 12, 2014||SSC Napoli 3 - Roma 0||ITAC|
|Feb 9, 2014||Lazio 0 - Roma 0||ITA1|
|3||Iván Rodrigo Piris||Defender|
|16||Daniele De Rossi||Midfielder|
|17||Pablo Daniel Osvaldo||Striker|
|-||Raffaele Di Gennaro||Goalkeeper|
Who says you cannot teach an old dog - or a footballer of maturing years - new tricks? The 36-year-old Totti remains as much a driving force at the Olimpico as he has ever been and his experience could be key to unlocking the Inter defence on Sunday.
While the hosts will hope Francesco Totti turns back the clock and produces some of his timeless magic, Inter have a dependable veteran of their very own. The 39-year-old has been excellent of late, often operating in central midfield, and he will be relishing another battle in the middle of the park.
Both sides love to score goals and with a draw no good to either team. Expect an entertaining affair and two very busy goalkeepers.
Times In BST
Live Final scheduled Suspended Cancelled Postponed